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Leaping without looking first makes for a poor IT strategy

The leap-without-looking approach in the IT world can burn businesses in a number of ways. (Thinkstock/iStockphoto)

The leap-without-looking approach in the IT world can burn businesses in a number of ways. (Thinkstock/iStockphoto)

Having to make decisions about IT solutions can be intimidating when new technologies are coming out every day and those choices will have serious implications for an entire company. The task is even more daunting for small and midsize businesses (SMBs) with limited staff and resources.

Pricewaterhouse Coopers Director Pierre Legrand spoke about a lack of IT leadership skills hurting businesses at the Australian Computer Society's Young IT conference in Sydney, Australia last week. Specifically, he said that too much time is spent contemplating how cloud computing or bring-your-own-device (BYOD) programs can be implemented, and not enough direct and swift action is being taken.

Delays can certainly have negative effects on SMBs, but so can investing in the wrong technology. The reality is, many companies lack the staff with the necessary training to make informed, timely decisions and then act on them.

In these instances, managed IT support and provides organizations with the necessary resources to make timely decisions based on the right information. Leaping without looking rarely pays off. But with the right guidance, delays and costly mistakes become non-issues.

"They need the ability to look at IT trends and opportunities out there and make decisions,"  Commonwealth Bank CIO Michael Harte said at the same event. "Don't talk about it for a year, don't put 80 levels of governance around it, don't try to ask a million people for approval. They need to ask themselves 'what is the opportunity that exists to actually change the way businesses achieve results in a volatile market?'"

SMBs must be ready to take action – but make it the right action. A little guidance from experienced IT professionals will take companies a lot further than the leap-without-looking approach.