Stories by Kathleen Melymuka

Interview: The end of corporate IT? Not quite

When Nicholas G. Carr famously asserted that "IT doesn't matter" in 2003, he backed up his thesis with data gathered by IDC and Orlando-based consulting firm Alinean. After Carr's recent prediction of the end of corporate IT, Alinean CEO Tom Pisello told Computerworld US's Kathleen Melymuka that continued research has raised some very interesting findings about the relationship of IT spending and business success.
Is Nicholas Carr on to something in touting the end of corporate IT? Carr's claim that IT has become a commodity utility has fueled a two-year debate on whether technology investments deliver competitive advantage. On one hand, we agree that corporate IT often spends too much to "keep the lights on." Most companies invest more than 65 percent of IT budgets on basic infrastructure like PCs, servers, e-mail and storage.

Written by Kathleen Melymuka20 June 05 22:00

Tutorial/How-to: How to do an IT security audit

If you're the IT manager at a small to midsize business, it's only a matter of time until you're asked to do an IT security audit. Even in a larger company, if security is decentralized, you may be the go-to guy in IT. You're neither a security expert nor an auditor, and resources are tight. How will you begin and where will you go from there?
-- First, don't panic. "People sell themselves short," says Jay M. Williams, senior vice president and chief technology officer at The Concours Group, an IT consulting firm in Kingwood, Texas. "For the most part, security is common sense."

Written by Kathleen Melymuka10 July 03 22:00

STRESS: High anxiety

An IT manager and a programmer at a large Eastern frozen food company were locked in mortal combat. "Bob," the programmer, was working 60- to 80-hour weeks for "Larry," his manager. But Bob thought that Larry didn't appreciate his efforts and that he often threw back perfectly good code as unacceptable. Bob was so distraught that he was literally hiding from Larry.
Larry was equally annoyed at Bob, whose work he considered substandard. He wanted Bob out, but he knew that if he fired him, the IT department would miss a critical deadline.

Written by Kathleen Melymuka31 March 03 22:00

Rules of engagement

On July 1, 1998, TransCanada PipeLines Ltd. and Nova Chemicals Corp. completed the biggest merger in Canada's history. But for their information technology organizations, the challenge was just beginning. Although the two giants of Canadian wholesale natural gas had complementary businesses, you'd be hard-pressed to find two more radically different IT shops.

Written by Kathleen Melymuka25 July 00 12:01