User-Oriented IT Conversation In Red Rock Country

The LANDesk Management Suite and Security Suite release coming this summer was code named Balanced Rock. Here is a picture of our Product Management team and a few others standing under Balanced Rock in Arches National Park.

Sometimes we like to mix a little fun with our work at LANDesk. A few weeks a ago, our Product Management Team took their motor homes and camping trailers and headed to the red rock country of Moab for a few days. The goal was to plan out a future product releases that fit into our Secure User Management Solution.

What Does User-Oriented IT Mean to You?

During the planning session, we talked a lot about User-Oriented IT and the requirements this vision will drive in the next level of features in LANDesk’s Total User Management and Secure User Management Solutions. One exercise we went through asked the question of the team, “What does User-Oriented IT mean to you?” We mapped out different phrases and themes from this exercise and we got a pretty good idea of what Product Management thinks. I’d like to ask the same question of our Blog readers, “What does User-Oriented IT mean to you?” We’d really like you to be a part of this ongoing User-Oriented IT discussion.

Are Users More Tech-Savvy or Is Technology More User-Oriented?

Part of the conversation around User-Oriented IT within the industry is that the new generation of workers is more tech-savvy than those of past generations. That notion perplexes me a bit. After we returned from a hike to Corona Arch (made famous with World’s Largest Rope Swing on YouTube), I put the question out to our Product Management team “Are users more tech savvy or has technology become more user-oriented?”

There were heavy arguments on both sides of this conversation. Someone pointed out that young people seem to know how to pick up anything and get how it works. Another countered that the technology is getting to the point where anyone can pick up a device and get how it works.  I think it was our User Experience guy that said it was a convergence of both. Think of the Smartphones and tablets today, a child or an older person who doesn’t use computers can pick them up and easily get how to interact with the technology. Another point made was to take a look at how teenagers are often the power users and utilize so many different social apps in order to communicate. In fact, there seems to be a constant shift and evolution in what apps are popular. So I again invite you to comment, “Do you think the next generation of workers is more tech-savvy or is the technology is getting more user-oriented?”

Does User-Oriented IT Mean a Shift in Power or Balance?

Finally, some within the Product Management group thought that User-Oriented IT is an example of the pendulum swinging a little too far over to the user and that there are plenty of things IT does that don’t really impact the user directly. I was quick to point out that within our User-Oriented IT story that isn’t the case. We realize there is a balance between user choice and freedom with IT control. There is a balance of what IT does for the infrastructure and delivery of business critical projects and giving users an experience where they can trouble-shoot, solve, and request services they need. So I offer you the following questions: Does User-Oriented IT give you the impression that the user gets more of the power or that there is a balance? How do you see User-Oriented IT playing out in your organization?

In the end, our Product Management team did a lot of planning, made important decisions about new features and defined much of what will be coming within the next couple Secure User Management releases. However, the conversation continues and we still want your input, so please comment on the following three questions we were debating in the Red Rock canyons of Moab:

  1. What does User-Oriented IT mean to you?
  2. Are users more tech-savvy or is technology becoming more user-oriented?
  3. Do you think User-Oriented IT takes power away from IT or strikes a balance between the user and IT?