A Debate with the Doctor of Failure

Failure IT Failure happens. There are many issues and stakeholders in any technology implementation process and any of them adds complexity that can lead to failure. The question is how much technology, the DNA of the technology vendor, and other stakeholders contribute to a failure. Is it always a project management issue or can technology also be partially or even completely at fault? 

When it comes to IT Failure, there is a long history of projects (in CloudBlog's view these are all on-premise) that failed because either the technology or the way the vendor sold the technology massively melted down. For example, CloudBlog feels obligated to point out that SAP was sued by Waste Management, Siebel has crashed numerous times, such as in Australia, at ATT, in numerous other telcos. Oracle meanwhile was sued by the US Department of Justice not for technology failure but for contract gouging.

We asked the Doctor of IT Failure himself - Michael Krigsman, who in reality is the CEO of Asuret and the author of the ZDNet blog IT Project Failures, about this. Krigsman also will refuse himself the title of Doctor of Failure because he is 100 percent focused on success and the prevention of failures. CloudBlog tried to break Krigsman out of his overly objective personality quirk and get him to admit the obvious, but it was tougher than it appeared. Perhaps it was the arid suburban air or the oxygen deprivation resulting from being a mile high, but Krigsman did finally admit that pure cloud companies do have certain advantages.

The debate was fun. The tension was thick. The atmosphere was dripping with humor, but here's part 1 of the interview with Krigsman:


Here's what we at CloudBlog holds to be true (Michael may disagree with each or all of these - it was a debate after all):

  1. The closer a customer is to the vendor, the better the communication, resulting into reduced chances of failure.
  2. The purer the vendor's cloud strategy, the faster access to innovation and ultimately to success.
  3. The best cloud multitenant infrastructures reduce failure because they are customer-tested daily on a massive scale.
  4. The more that cloud is part of a vendor's DNA, the more the vendor is focused on customer success. It is inherent in the way the licenses are sold.
  5. The more agile a customer can be, the better the business benefit, resuling into reduced chance of failure.
  6. Cloud vendors offer a faster time to benefit because software, hardware, and the complexities around acquisition and implementation are reduced. Faster time to benefit equals better chance for success.
  7. The closer the business units work with IT the better the result of the system.
  8. The more open and accessible the system, the faster the pace of non-invasive innovation, leading to increased chances of customer success. These systems by their nature are best provided by pure cloud vendors.
  9. Faster access to innovation and closer ties among business units, IT, and vendor results in higher productivity and a reduced chance of failure.
  10. True collaboration at scale can only be done in the cloud, resulting in higher productivity, faster time to benefit, and a far greater chance of success.

CloudBlog didn't ask Krigsman about each of these issues, but we asked him overall about several. Here's his response.

What's yours?



John Taschek can be followed on Twitter.