August 02, 2011, 12:51 PM — One of my favorite stories from many stints as a manager was the direct-report with deadline problems who we sent to an expensive, full-day time-management seminar to try to help her get her life and work schedule under control.
She thought it was a great idea; a way to learn techniques to make her life less stressful and her work more consistent.
She left halfway through the seminar because she couldn't afford the time to finish it without being late on projects she'd accepted since having scheduled the seminar.
The only reason I tell that story (the histrionics of which make it a lot funnier in person) is that no one I know still remembers Catch-22 as anything but a kind of stale old story about a ridiculously hidebound organization and a guy who couldn't get something done because of a rule that he couldn't do it unless it had already been done.
Which is fine if you're writing an English Lit. essay, but not the kind of thing that makes for useful revelations at work.
Revelations like: if the adage (and Gartner report) is correct in estimating that 80 percent of the work and budget of the average IT shop goes to "keep the lights on" legacy apps, routine maintenance and support, then only 20 percent of the total resources of IT will be available for all the other projects users are clamoring to have done.
That means – even if migrating many of your legacy apps to the cloud will save a lot of money, a lot of time in management and ongoing development, and make end users happy by improving performance, making the legacies available from anywhere and adding features the apps never had before – that many IT shops will never get around to doing that migration because they're too busy splitting the meager 20 percent of their available time among the 25 or 30 projects users are demanding be finished right away.
This according to "The Great Cloud Blockage," a blog entry from Ben Kepes, a tech investor, consultant and business developer who has written extensively on the business implications of both cloud computing and the business of providing cloud services while working with RackSpace, CloudAve and a range of other SAAS and cloud companies over the years. **
His post came out of a roundtable discussion on enterprise cloud adoption that included the VP of strategy from Salesforce, cloud architect at Netflix and former manager of global systems at Bechtel.