The Why of Enterprise Applications

Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: enterprise applications

How much value can be derived from an enterprise application? By value, I mean:

  • Simplify an on-going business challenge
  • Enable and facilitate collaboration
  • Reduce friction and latency in achieving desired business outcomes

A very public example of a failure is the federal government’s Obamacare website. It failed on all the metrics above. The other night, I heard a story on the radio about how the federal government has a very high percentage of applications costing $10 million or more failing to deliver value. That has to be 90%+ of IT projects!

What’s at the root of this?

  • Unclear vision for the application
  • Inability to manage scope
  • Pieces of the solution created independently don’t integrate well
  • Business teams don’t know how to communicate with developers; developers don’t know how to communicate with business teams
  • People responsible for project oversight lack experience and expertise to lead such efforts and detect possible problems–they are too trusting and don’t have the capability to verify that things are on track.
  • Development delays undermine testing before go-live and the roll-out to stakeholders who need the system

One of my favorite quotes comes from the Dalai Lama: “When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.” Sadly, the federal government seems not to see losses as an opportunity to learn.

Applications are deployed for the people who will use the application day in and day out. If the application doesn’t work well for them, the application doesn’t deliver value. It’s that simple.

Thought for the week:

“The project you are most resisting carries your greatest growth.” – Robin Sharma
What do you think? I welcome your comments!

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting

© 2013 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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One Response to The Why of Enterprise Applications

  1. James Cayton, Ph.D. says:

    Right Again! This looks like an impossible project to me. I can not imagine how they could roll out a huge new application which had not been tested and which reportedly scarificed internet protection. “If you like your old policy, you can keep it!”. Kathleen Sebelius is going down as one of the all time liars in recent history, and so is her boss. This is beyond simple incompetence. I remember when Truman and Eisenhower (both parties) spoke the truth. Let us move toward that again. Throw the liars from both parties out! We have citizens to replace them, and if they lie, we will throw them out too. James Cayton, Ph.D.


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