Keeping Scope In Mind

I had the occasion to make a couple of trips down to North Carolina’s Triad area over the past few weeks.  Instead of taking the normal I-95 route down the coast and then west into NC, I went by way of Harrisburg PA (Route 76 to 81 to 220).  The scenery was spectacular and I probably saved at least $25 in tolls.  However after you clear the NJ Turnpike it becomes clear that this is a route preferred by truck drivers and by my second trip down I became annoyed with the  practice of trucks overtaking slower trucks that were probably going a fraction of a single mile per hour slower.  I found myself thinking, really what is the point of this infinitesimally small improvement over the course of their route?  Not to mention the fact that it slowed me (and everybody else) down while I waited for this “grand maneuver” to complete on the 70MPH divided two lanes of asphalt.

This got me thinking about the value of small improvements in general and how they relate to a company’s technology plan.  In some cases small improvements really don’t make any sense in the same way overtaking trucks going less than a half mile per hour slower doesn’t seem to make any sense.

So to expand on my previous post about Evaluating IT Investments I think it’s crucial to also examine the scope and timing of proposed improvements.  For example, say you have a physical server that is reaching the end of it’s useful life.  Does it really make good sense to go out and buy the latest hardware and software and migrate the data over?  It’s certainly questionable.   Considering the advent of cloud computing and it’s benefits over standard chassis-based systems that will inevitably require another “forklift” upgrade and the perpetuation of assuredly outdated backup scenarios.  Our veteran account executives and sales engineers have been through our own internal improvements and those of our customers and represent a valuable resource for you to tap if you need a second sounding board on your next technology improvement project.  We’re here to help.

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