The silo challenge - with the best of intentions...
Every business knows the importance of information
technology in supporting both its customers and employees through a set of IT services and applications. To best deliver their
IT services in terms of availability, stability, ease of deployment, etc. a company with its own data-centre will focus on
providing great infrastructure and excellent technical platforms. This will often be achieved by establishing a number of
specialized groups, each responsible for a different technical platform within the infrastructure. These groups allow the
company to work to achieve the best potential of each technical platform with the funds available. The groups may also, to
a degree, be semi-autonomous. Each group is generally highly specialized and high performing but it is also focussed on its
own platform above all else; it is a SILO.
Each silo strives to optimize
their technical platform, reducing risk, waste and cost but this may be achieved at the expense of the whole; over investing
in one platform whilst, at the same time, failing to realise the potential for risk, waste and cost reduction across the total
infrastructure. Silos can also cause issues with terminology becoming silo specific. The same concept may have a different
name in different silos or a numberof silos may use the same term to describe different things.
With a DevOps approach, the same group is developing and running one or more IT services with end-to-end responsibility.
This does increase awareness but may still fall short of a truly holistic view of risk, waste and cost across the complete
Meeting the challenge
We need to develop and encourage disciplines that create awareness across the organisation
so that each person identifies their role in terms of the complete picture. The specialists now needed by the business are
ones delivering communication and awareness of history, present and future, empowering each individual to contribute to their
fullest for the benefit of the whole. Capacity Management is one of the disciplines that, by its nature,
meets the challenge of helping to reclaim the business potential from a silo driven organisation.