CIOs are aging fast these days as they contemplate what it means to shift their strategies, organizations and technology to meet the enormous business challenges in their consumers’ and employees’ mobile world. The strategy challenges alone are mind numbing and the questions are limitless. Native vs. HTML5 or hybrid? How do we support BYOD? Which MDM vendor meets our policy need? Hell, what are our mobile policies?!
As if this wasn’t enough, agility has become the most hated word in technology. “At what cost will we pay for being agile?” asked one CIO while shaking his head. He warned that delivering agility will come with a price, and that it will probably be in quality.” None the less, the wheels of change are rolling so CIOs are heads down trying to deliver on these new business requirements.
CIOs are looking at any development process that could be compressed to gain speed without quality suffering. Not surprisingly, continuous integration platforms like Hudson, Jenkins and Bamboo are white hot. The theory is that by automating the test process inside the mobile dev platform you can shift as much 20% of the test workload to the actual developer. By doing so you greatly increase the speed and quality of delivery. It’s just one process but it’s a pretty tempting starting point.
Obviously, and on the app delivery side of the house, cloud computing has completely changed the game for developers and sys admins. CIOs know that they can pick up speed using a cloud architecture, but where do they start? What about security? More fears!
And then there are the people issues, and these may be the greatest CIO fears of all, especially those in rural areas. Where in the world do I find talented people to build, test and deliver mobile? Rarely do we see the previous generation leading the next charge in technological advancement. In other words, the guys who made a living writing COBOL apps in the 70’s were not the first guys to build client/server apps in the 80’s. It was a whole new generation of programmers that led the client/server wave of change. This most likely will be true in mobile and means that finding mobile talent has risen to the #1 headache for most CIOs! Do you have a 19-year-old? I suggest that you whisper in his or her ear is “Go mobile!”
That being said, most of my CIO friends are embracing this evolution with a battle cry of Evolve or Die! even though they’re looking at a lot of sleepless nights ahead.
About the Author
As CEO of SOASTA, Tom brings more than 30 years of experience building early stage software companies, leading two companies to successful IPOs. Tom is a regular speaker at both cloud and testing events, and has become a leading advocate in using the cloud to empower individuals and accelerate changes in how applications are built, tested and deployed. Most recently, Tom served as President and CEO of Kenamea. Prior to Kenamea, he was CEO of Dorado Corp., a financial services software provider. Previous to Dorado, he was EVP of Sagent Technology through its 1999 IPO, entrepreneur-in-residence at Crosspoint Venture Partners, and held executive positions at Digitalk Corp., Knowledgeware (KWI) and Encore Financial Services. Tom also serves on several boards in the Silicon Valley.