Blog talkradio john mancini narrative blog summary nov 2013
The following is a summary of my November 15, 2013BlogTalkRadio interview with AIIM
President John Mancini (17 years) – see this link for the podcast recording. Johnis a wellknown speaker and leader of the AIIM global community of information professionals. He is
also the author of the controversial e-book, „Occupy IT‟ Manifesto.
Abstract:As John noted in a 2012 Forbes article, thanks to the consumer technology and social
media revolutions, we live in a world of engagement. But many public and private sector
organizations are caught “between a rock and a hard place.” On the one hand, CEOs want to
embrace this new world of engagement. On the other, IT departments are reluctant to give up
the control they enjoyed in the “old world.” They understand that unless ways can be found to
bridge the gaps between the new Systems of Engagement and the old Systems of Record, brand
new information silos will be created. Yet they worry about the new transparency.
In Mr. Mancini‟s view, these challenges require that business executives reassert leadership over
5 key IT initiatives: (1) commit to the cloud; (2) mobilize everything; (3) make the business
social; (4) digitize anything that moves; and (5) prepare for extreme information management.
While addressing this kind of challenge requires technical skills, he also feels that it requires
process and customer acumen more often found in the business than in our IT departments.
Background: During myBlogTalkRadio interview, John first elaborated more on his
background in IT and technology trade associations, and what led him to this "Occupy IT"
perspective, and a framework to express some of his frustrations with IT in recent years.John has
been thinking about this issue for a while, and the “Occupy Wall Street” movement last year
provided a appropriate metaphor for some of his ideas. Even earlier, in July 2010, for example,
he launched a six part series on “the Big Bang and Information Management” his blog, Digital
Landfill. During our interviewshow, the one Big Bang episode I referred to was on “The
Shutterfly Effect” where John lamented not having at work the same intuitive collaborative
experience he experienced with his daughter‟s photo-sharing site!
We explored John‟s basic thesis: i.e. the CIO's quandary between systems of engagement and
record. He noted “information as the new currency in the information age.” CIOs are facing
three forces or “disruptors”: Consumerization; Mobile and the Cloud; and the Change in the
Nature of Work Itself.He defined “systems of record” as attempts to replace paper with systems
of enterprise accountability and process.
Enterprise users, however, have been frustrated in trying tobring into that environment
consumer-based technology (called “system of engagement) into the organization. Why don‟t
they work the same inside the enterprise? Why not as simple? This is a central “equation” and
question for the CIO (in both public and private sector) - how to tap this social engagement
potential for the enterprise “without losing [organizational] control.” It is “unfair” in the sense
that people carry consumer expectations about web performance into all their IT experience.
They eexpect everything to be like Amazon which is just not realistic, the Obamacare website
being a recent case in point.
problems with Obamacare web site. 3. Why is this such a quandary, challenge for IT? Differences (or
similarities) in situation between public and private sectors?
A/ A general prob, public and private sector…e.g. problems with Obamacare web site. People carry
consumer expectations (gone thru roof…expect everything like Amazon…not realistic) re web
performance into all their IT experience.
4. Provide an example of positive "pay-off" if an enterprise can reconcile both engagement and record
objectives. An example of an enterprise that appears to be "getting it".
Building out sys of record at one point last 20 years a pt of competition and differentiation. But challenge
now, that necessity, backend and legacy still need be efficient, but change framework in which syst
operate…they are table stacks. Need link sound back end infr to more more engaging front end. “world
changed forever in Dec 2010 when CEOs got iPads for Xmas”.
The “cloud and mobile the great steroids in this equation.” E.g. apps on TV people standing with phones
interacting with banks, accounts, loans. Other exsgeolocationcap’ty of mobile devices, just managed to
scratch surface – eg insurance processing, streamline, on TV now.
5. By contrast, share an example (or generic consequences) if an enterprise resists such evolution.
6. Discuss some promising area of technology (mobile? cloud?) in either system of engagement or
record which might help make a CIO's life easier in making this transition.
7. Reality Check. Some IT software platforms (SharePoint?) make the claim as being potential "one stop
shops" in bringing both engagement and record "worlds" under one enterprise roof. What is your
reaction to such claims? - or are "real world" large enterprise applications most likely to be a mix of
various software, commercial and open source, on premise and cloud...if so, what processes or systems
might help govern and coordinate such a mélange?
How address this complexity? AIIM recently did survey on state of SP 2013, Office 365…temptation to
think of platforms as more than platforms…different than applications. Bus need to become more
sophisticated in assessing these solutions. SP imp spec bus probl – egcollab – but ask to address much
broader needs. E.g needs 3rd party resources, development, etc to allow platform to turn into a useful
set of applications. Another aspect, people think “can pluck consumer apps and drop into the
enterprise”…but not so, and one firms insecure example, by accident allowing access into limited access
enterprise records! Other key lesson, in enterp context, yes lessons consumer space re imp and
useability, but cant “just pick up app and drop into enterp and expect to function.”
8. You note that business process and perspective should loom larger within the CIO's role. Explain
Changing CIO perspectives, trad IT Dept, delegate more power to lines of bus…? Content mgt both a
tech and an app as well – think of in both frames. Challenging. L/T thrust on processes facil by content
rather then tech perse. Thus AIIM changed focus more on content and bus process improvement.
CIO Next Steps: I asked, given the complexity of the issues involved, what quick tips or first
steps would John would recommend to a CIO?He first noted that their role is a very challenging
one, perhaps as much as that of CEO. Recent articles in the Economist and Harvard Business
Review bear this out: for example, half of the CEOs surveyed wondered what IT could not be
bought as a commodity. In general terms, he noted that CIOs tend to underemphasize the “I” in
their title. These senior executives tend to focus more on IT, and hence act more like CTOs than
CIOs. In his view, “pipes [are] still important, but more important [is] what goes through the
pipes”. Information, after all, is what drives the business.
Here are some additional AIIM [spell out] resources and articles that Mr. Mancini recommended
AIIM has four basic purposes, exercise thought leadership, provide expert advice, support
community and networking opportunities in the IT field, and provide skills development in core
IT and processes – AIIM‟s Certificated Information Professional credential helps weave many of
these skills together.
Here are some added AIIM resources (many are free)
- Market research. It tends not to focus on analyzing vendors or market quadrants, but
rather on mor on how end user organizations and executives look at technology,
procurement, implementation and ROI.
- Aim.org/training comprehensive training program
Upcoming AIIM events you are involved in that might be of interest to listeners?
The Big AIIM annual conference. It has sold out in the last two years. Anyone
interested in attending, should consider registering now, since it will take place in
Orlando next April [URL]. The audience event 90% for those trying to implement IT.
That is the focus, rather that narrow IT technology.
Others in DC, other local events. Washington D.C. has a dynamic AIIM chapter. Last
evening, for example, the D.C. Chapter hosted speaker Steve Levinson of the US Courts
to discuss content management initiatives. There are many other metro area chapters
across the U.S. and overseas. Every year AIIM does a
“road show”, visiting several Chapters. This past year it has been on SharePoint and
John explained why and what of CIP…
IT lack business understanding and business people lack IT understanding. If we look back to to
the project management field some 30 years ago, then they saw the need for a certification, and
a defined body of knowledge. That is now history, and the PM sector (and PMI) now
have1,000s of PMPs in world.AIIM sees the need cross technology and business fields and
perspectives. Having better educated professionals as CIPs will help enterprises better
understand systems of record and systems of engagement, as well as their potential synergies.See
Subsequent Twitter #collabtechtalk
Two related prior podcasts for this episode…:
For a more detailed discussion of the CIP certification, see my past May BlogTalkRadio
podcast interview with Steve Weissman, leader of the Holly Group and respected
consultant, trainer and creator of the introductory videos for CIP preparation on the
AIIM web site,as well as comments byJesse Wilkins, Director for Research and
Development of AIIM International. Developed in accordance with ISO Standard 17024,
CIP candidates must demonstrate knowledge of six domain areas across the spectrum of
content and information management. Points discussed in the show addressed how the
CIP compares with other IT and project management credentials, its value in helping
professionals bridge IT and business needs, and specific test-taking strategies and
For more of a technical and SharePoint perspective on this platform, see also my
BlogTalkRadio podcast last June with Joel Oleson, a social media strategist, Intranets
guru and SharePoint evangelist. Joel is currently working with ViewDo Labs as Director
of Technical Evangelism. In this interview, Joel talked about the recent release of
SharePoint 2013, and what developers, end users and managers can expect. We discussed
most interesting SharePoint 2013 features, including new developer tools, and exciting
social media and mobile functionality. Joining us for the discussion was Mack Sigman,
SharePoint Architect and Practice Leader at CSC, and President of the Federal
SharePoint Users Group (FEDSPUG) in Washington D.C.