There’s a saying in motorsports circles to “run what you brung,” meaning that rather than lust over turbochargers, engine modifications and esoteric tunings, simply drive the vehicle you came with, in its current state. It’s easy to attribute any failings in your ability to the tools available to you, or expenditures and enhancements that are in the works. In many cases, IT too should focus a bit more on running with what it already has available.
Most of us have been through huge systems implementations or upgrades, where thousands of hours and millions of dollars result in a go-live that brings a palatable sense of relief, and a desire to move onto the next challenge. Bits and pieces of functionality or process changes are pushed back to some future date, and as the personnel and money focus on the next project, these lists tend to become lost or shuffled off on junior staff. The hard work done, millions of dollars of additional business benefit lie untapped, with IT turning its attention to the sexy new project rather than putting the final spit and shine on what was just implemented.
With corporate budgetary belt-tightening becoming an increasingly likely scenario, look for systems that are already in place, where significant process or cost improvements can be found and realized with minimal effort. Dig up the long ignored lists of future enhancements, and investigate what can be done quickly, cheaply and with the most impact, and look to refine what you already have in place, as requests for new implementations will likely face increased scrutiny. Instead of the next big thing, run what you brung to the accolades of your peers in the C-suite.