Unfolding plans 22 – It might be time for a rethink

It might be time for a rethink about our Strategic ICT Group.  It has met every other month or so for a few years and the agenda has changed to accommodate the new things that we have done but basically the format has remained the same: an update on projects; agree new projects; discussion on the big things going on in ICT Services and; an update on each of the core systems projects.

It might be time for a change as some of the big things that we had set ourselves have come to fruition.  The planning systems have all been collapsed from the former district systems into one.  The last to go live was just before Christmas.  Our financial system has been upgraded to the latest major release and all the work associated with that has been put to bed.

So that leaves two core systems.  Our customer relationship management project is just about to get underway and our people system is up for review.  One of our other major systems, our social care application doesn’t really get the coverage it should.

This is all good news.  It means that those things we set out to do are happening yet it presents us with a problem.  What next?

I suppose it won’t take us long to come up with some other topics of conversation but I wouldn’t want a meeting for the sake of it.  The customer relationship management project is going to throw a lot of new ideas out, especially around the application architecture though we already have a project board for that.  It’s important that we all get together to help shape where we are going with our technology and so I need to get my thinking cap on.

I was off network this morning.  We’d made our way up to Consett for a training session only to find that there was no access to a public wireless network or a 3G connection.  There were plenty of networks available just none public and it seemed too cheeky to go and ask if we could borrow access from one of the companies in the business centre.  There was some irony as we provide the network anyway.

I hadn’t planned for such an event.  Normally it is no bother.  If I know that I’m going to be offline I set my laptop up with documents I can work on or take a book.  Normally if I can’t find a network then I can connect through the phone but this time even that was out of bounds.

But today was unplanned.  Once I had caught up with any email I could respond to I was stuck.  There was nothing left to do other than ring my hands and pull out my hair.    It’s frightening how quickly we have become accustomed to working wherever we put down our technology and how lost we are when it is not available.  It’s like when you have a power cut and the first thing you do is reach for the light switch.

This is what it must have been like in the old days.

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