What are we being overwhelmed about? What is overwhelming? And what is the relevance of Volume, Velocity and Variety?
Those of us involved in the IT industry are now experiencing unprecedented conditions that on a daily basis are quite often overwhelming our individual ability to make sense of what is happening. Dramatic statement?
The Volume of tasks, decisions, requests is on the up for many of us – a check of the email inbox, social feeds and voice mails – is a tell-tale sign of being overwhelmed. So is the Velocity of this information as technology avails a speed that for many of us find overwhelming, and finally, the Variety of sources, questions and options present a scenario where for many of us, the capability to identify the Must’s, Should’s and Could’s becomes very blurred.
Drilling into three fairly classic roles suggests these characteristics are alive and kicking, and need to be something we all consider.
CXO Person – The C level person is charged with steering their organization to support growth and increasing revenues and market share. Whether the C level person is a CIO, CMO, COO or CEO, the daily challenge often facing them is how they make sense of the amount of circumstantial information that runs past their office like a deluge. Business decisions, agile product development, endless vendor recommendations, internal reports, strategy meetings, analyst vision, business conferences, social feeds from peers, gut feeling and yes, recent experience of doing it before. Last point is key – doing it before is fast becoming a tenuous hook that many CXOs’ have long given up as using as their default position.
Applying the 3Vs to the CXO person might look like this;
IT Sales Person – The IT Sales person is charged with selling to the CXO person to hit targets, achieve campaign results and drive business annuity. Whether the sales person is selling products, solutions or services ( or all three ), the daily challenge often facing them is how they mesh the mounting product information, the solutions available and the service portfolios to understanding what the CXO actually wants. Whether they chose to be a Left to Right ( products to meet business needs ) or Right to Left ( business imperatives seeking solutions and services to affect change ) , the IT Sales person is equally bombarded by a deluge of sales tasks, target information, proposals to clients, product training, gut feeling and yes, recent experience of doing it before. Last point is key – doing it before is fast becoming a tenuous hook that many IT Sales people have long given up as their default position.
Applying the 3Vs to the IT Sales Person might look like this:
IT Support Person – the IT Support person is charged with ensuring IT customers get issues resolved, advice communicated and Service Levels met. Whether the IT support person is first, second or third line, or software or hardware focused, the daily challenge often facing them is how they balance the volume of requests, the demand for on the spot fault resolution and the range of calls in terms of devices, applications, locations and infrastructure in use i.e. BYOD, Cloud, personal and corporate apps.
Applying the 3Vs to the IT Support Person might look like this:
Where is all this headed?
The sheer size of the Big Data Conversation is often too large for the humble human brain to comprehend and this is not going to get any better for some significant time to come – if at all. On a similar plane, the three dimensional environment that my three ‘example’ roles live in each day is only the tip of the iceberg. Our industry has hundreds of roles that span all aspects of IT product, solution and service, and if I’m right, the Volume, Velocity and Variety of events is becoming not for the feint hearted. Because for many it represents an overwhelming situation that many cannot cope with.
With the explosion of technology still occurring without any sign of abatement, there are many roles that are going to need to change to ensure survival. The three I highlighted are just three of many that will feel the squeeze on their time, concentration and ability to turn ‘stuff’ around.
Of course I imagine you may be seeking a resolution to this as you get to this point in my post today. Sadly I originally set out trying to give some practical advice, but on reflection realised that there isn’t a cook book of ideas and tips to manage the 3Vs. Sure there are lots of tips and tricks to improve time management, work allocation, smarter communications and prioritization. But you know – I see many people struggle with even acknowledging that in their particular role in the IT industry their daily lives are under intense scrutiny.
If all the industry can do is to acknowledge that the three Vs more readily associated with Big Data are also part of every day life then ITS A START!