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Availability & Capacity Management

Availability & Capacity Management
What should be the primary focus of modernization efforts: people or processes?

Top Answer: Rabinow’s Rule #23 of leadership states that If you have someone who is a dope at the top, you will have, or soon will have dopes all the way down. There are a lot of people who are thrust into different roles without understanding the potential ramifications, probably because they were brought in to provide a different perspective. But process improvement is also really important. A lot of people think technology will be that silver bullet to help with your modernization, and they forget about everything else. The reason why a lot of companies have come into this mess is probably because of the processes in place. But that could be because the wrong people were put in place. We never know.

If you are a current SAP customer, when do you plan to migrate to SAP S/4HANA?

Top Answer: No plan to migrate soon.

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Would you have done anything differently leading up to the IPO, now that you're on the other side?

Top Answer: I’ve learned that I can do this quickly if needed, but if I were to do it over again I would take a little more time and get better alignment with the business on all initiatives. I would also allot more time for the data migration efforts and enablement piece, as well as add to the systems’ DevOps process and sprint management before kicking off these Initiatives. But another important thing I learned is that even though we delivered a lot on the system side, leading up to the IPO, we were only devoting about 10% of resources to the system architecture and technology. We focused on implementing and automating the systems, and those are working fine, but what happens to our existing technical debt? Now after the IPO, we’re all struggling to work like a public company because the data integrity and the systems are not 100% there. So if I have another chance to do this in the future, I'm always going to keep at least 20% to 30% of the team focusing on the systems’ technical debt along with the digital transformation initiatives.

How are you (CIOs and IT leads here) using product management techniques to manage IT?  Do you follow sprint planning and other PM methodologies?

Top Answer: We do follow a modified scrumban approach. We run weekly springs with frequent releases of “at least” once a week. Demoes every two weeks or as soon as we have some demo-able code. Operations work using a more pure Kamban methodology with clear priorities and “taking from the top”. For projects spring and priorities are dealt by the product owners and the team leaders a few weeks in advance to make sure they are ready to be taken by the dev/design team when added to the board

What was it like for your team leading up to your company’s IPO?

Top Answer: It was an incredible experience and a big Aha moment. I led these systems implementations multiple times from quote to cash, including CPQ and billing, revenue recognition, putting a new ERP system in place along with procurement automation, and automating our customer provisioning.  A unique challenge we had at UserTesting was that we had to do all these things in an eight-month timeframe while also evolving processes and creating enablement materials. It was a lot of pressure for sure. We were working with multiple implementation partners at the same time to ensure we didn’t miss any timelines, which was a risk as they all had to align on the deliverables. But we were also laser-focused on not compromising on quality, which was a big challenge and huge accomplishment. I had to focus on my team's blockers and motivate them to deliver the projects successfully while working closely with our executive team to get their buy-in on decisions fast. We had to be sure we were giving them the right visibility into where we are on the projects, the risks we were seeing and how I planned to remediate those issues. That was critical. Every week, we sent reports to the executive team to get their alignment. If some things had to shift, then I’d put that plan into motion very quickly because there was no room for missing our deadlines. Ideally, as an IT leader, you can provide a business justification if you do miss a deadline and then still go on with your work. But this time we did not have that option, because we could not go IPO unless I put these systems in place. The executives and board members were not ready for the IPO timeline to change, so there was a lot of pressure. But in the end it was all worth it because we accomplished a major milestone for the organization and added huge business value by optimizing the deal process and reducing financial close time.

What guardrails have your team put in place to streamline working with the sales team?

Top Answer: We streamlined all projects into the same pipeline so to make sure everything is prioritized holistically at the company level

Do you think companies who have not opted for a remote working model will flip their position before Q1 ‘22?

Top Answer: I don't think our culture is ever going to change from the expectation of having people in the office because we have students who pay a lot of money to be here. It's like going to a restaurant and expecting no maitre d' and no waiters and waitresses. If you have to go back in the kitchen and get it yourself, are you going to pay a premium for that? Or are you just going to go to McDonald's or In-N-Out instead? There's a level of service that comes along with paying that much for tuition.

If your organization has returned to the office full time, do you feel like there was an adequate transition plan for employees in place?

Top Answer: The first-year MBAs started six weeks before everybody else and I don't know if campus or IT was ready for them to be back. It's been quite busy for higher education. It's a perfect storm: We have both first-year and second-year students who have never been here before, plus faculty who have been here before but have seemingly forgotten that they used to be here and don't seem to remember how to use things anymore. We have to basically handhold everybody through everything and that's proving to be a service challenge.

What are your thoughts on SaaS management platforms (SMP)?

Top Answer:

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People & Leadership
Strategy & Architecture
Cloud
End-User Services & Collaboration
Process Management
Governance, Risk & Compliance
Data & Analytics
Business Intelligence
Security & GRC
Disruptive & Emerging Technologies
Team & Organizational Design
Talent Management & Performance
Culture & Values
Financial Management
Security Strategy & Roadmap
IT Strategy & Roadmap
Outsourcing & Managed Services
Network
Compute
Storage
Backup & Disaster Recovery
Public Cloud
Hybrid Cloud
Contact Center & Telecom
Data Center
Device Management
End-User Devices
Mobile
Productivity Tools
Collaboration Solutions
Document Management
Finance
Business Applications
Legal
Human Resources (HRIS)
Technical Product Management
Software Development
DevOps
Quality Assurance
Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD)
Enterprise & IT Service Management (ITSM)
Availability & Capacity Management
KPIs, Metrics & Reporting
Vendor Management
Service Desk
Management Tools
Risk Management
Regulatory Compliance
Data Privacy
Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning (AI/ML)
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Integrations
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Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
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Threat Intelligence & Incident Response
Talent Sourcing & Hiring
Employee Engagement
Mentoring & Coaching
Training & Certification
Business Relationships
Portfolio, Program & Project Management
Data Management
Big Data
Vendor/Product Assessment
Asset & Configuration Management
Infrastructure
Performance
Contact Center Solutions
Applications & Platforms
Engineering
Operations Management
Mobile Development
Testing
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