#cloudchat Recap: IT Transformation War Stories

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As we wrapped up our #cloudchat series on IT transformation, we asked our team of experts to share war stories from the transformation trenches. One theme emerged above them all: the IT transformation journey may be challenging and a bit messy, but it’s necessary for innovation.

We were joined by a number of experts, including Rackspace CTO John Engates along with Rackspace Director of Professional Services Jaret Chiles and Cloud Evangelist Eric Johnson. Also contributing to the discussion was Bluelock’s Diana Nolting, RedHat’s Thomas Cameron, Apcera’s Mark Thiele, Microsoft’s Jeremy Likness and Cybric’s mike d. kail. The group weighed in on the following:

  • What kinds of results have you seen from IT transformation projects?
  • What’s the most successful IT transformation project you’ve been a part of? What happened to make it a success?
  • What’s the top thing you wish you had done differently during an IT transformation project?
  • What technologies have you implemented during IT transformation projects? Why?
  • Have you dealt with a clash of personalities during an IT transformation project? If so, how did you resolve the conflict?
  • Have you encountered an unexpected technical roadblock during an IT transformation project? How did you deal with it?

While a number of important results were discussed as side effects of a successful IT transformation project, one topped them all. More business and increased revenue should be the top priority, explained Thomas Cameron — everything else is just a bonus.

When asked to share transformation success stories, group members shared their favorite projects. Racker Jaret Chiles described how one recent client took five-day deployments to five minutes — and how they achieved those results.

The group almost unanimously agreed that taking calculated risks, and moving faster and smarter, is the best way to stay ahead of the curve.

When asked how to handle personality clashes during IT transformation projects, Diana Nolting put it beautifully saying if there isn’t clash, you may not be doing it right:

Finally, Jeremy Likness summed up a key theme to a successful transformation project: centralize, simplify, reduce risk early and adjust often.

If you want to hear more from our #cloudchat on IT transformation war stories, explore our Twitter Moment below. The IT transformation series may have concluded, but fear not — #cloudchat is back next week with a new topic! Join us next week on Sept. 14 at 11 a.m. CST, where we’ll be talking containers.

We’d love to hear from you — what topics do you want covered in future chats? Join us each week as we dissect topics with one another, Thursdays at 11 a.m. CST.

Garrett Heath develops content and supports customers on the Rackspace Social Media team. His previous experience includes technical project management in the cloud, content marketing and social media marketing. He enjoys writing about how the cloud is spurring innovation and telling stories about the people behind the tech. You can also read his work at MarketingBytes.io. In his free time, Garrett writes about food and local San Antonio culture at SA Flavor.

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