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Blog Article: IT Transformation or Resurrection?

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*Originally published for The IMF Blog on May 14, 2013 | View Post

“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”

– Mark Twain

In the latest episode of Michael Krigsman’s CxO Talk, social business expert Dion Hinchcliffe essentially says “IT is dead.” When I first saw the title of Michael’s article regarding the episode, “CxO Talk guest Hinchcliffe proclaims, ‘IT is dead,’” my initial thought was “here we go again.” After all, Hinchcliffe’s “proclamation” is nothing new.

It seems like I read at least an article or two every week about IT going the way of the dinosaurs sooner rather than later. I skip over a lot of these articles because it’s basically the same information rehashed. However, I enjoy the CxO Talk episodes so I gave it a listen and thought Hinchliffe made some strong, valid points.

The usual suspects are implicated here: Shadow IT, Cloud, BYOD, and the outdated concept of an overly-centralized IT department. While acknowledging the perceived risks of Shadow IT in a somewhat backhanded way, he even states “IT departments are now the hardest way to get things done.” Technology is moving to the lines of business, infrastructure is moving to cloud, and so on and so forth. Again, this really isn’t anything new.

Here’s the deal: IT’s not going anywhere. The department may change or undergo some sort of transformation but it’s not going to become extinct. Moving technology into the business units just means they’ll have to learn to perform IT activities themselves. Is this really practical? Talk about not knowing what you’ve got till it’s gone. As for cloud, most companies in the cloud still aren’t comfortable because of all the uncertainties associated with it. BYOD is great but somebody’s got to keep an eye on the devices.

Look, I’m not saying IT isn’t a hindrance in some cases. I’m not saying IT doesn’t stifle innovation on occasion. I’m saying, despite all the doomsday articles, IT is a critical part of the enterprise. Its absence would result in pure chaos. That being said, an attitude adjustment is necessary if IT’s going to play with the big boys.

Improved IT-business collaboration should be at the top of your list. Deal in terms of business value, not IT value. Stop dragging your feet on projects and looking for reasons as to why something can’t work. Say “Yes” for a change, or at least offer some comparable alternatives. Enable the business instead of holding it back. I’m sure you’ve heard this all before but it’s still not sinking in with a lot of organizations. IT will determine the role it plays in the enterprise moving forward. Why settle for keeping the lights on when you can revolutionize the company and/or your industry?

**If you’re interested in Shadow IT and its effect on the evolution of IT leadership roles, join our next webinar on May 30th at 2:00 PM EST. Michael O’Brien, an experienced and innovative IT leader, is presenting on the “Evolving Role of IT Managers and CIOs.”


Report: Communicating IT Service and Value within the Enterprise

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Rick Schwarz IT Communications Report

Report Cover

Click here to view a PDF version of this report: Rick Schwarz IT Communications Report

You can also find a brief passage from the report on The IMF Blog: Communicating IT Service and Value in the Enterprise

Communicating IT Service & Value within the Enterprise is based on a Web Forum presentation given by Phil Malatras and Story Colling from Broadcom. The reader will learn about Broadcom’s current IT-Business alignment model and the pivotal role communications plays in its success. Good frontline IT communications leads to fast and efficient customer service response resulting in satisfied customers, trust, and credibility.

IT has evolved over the past 25 years and now the organization is expected to act as a strategic business partner. In order for your workforce to succeed, you need the right mix of technical understanding, collaboration and relationship management, communication skills, business engagement skills, and business acumen. Discover how to build and transform your current staff to meet these demands.

This report will show you which communication areas to focus on and what common, ineffective practices to look out for in your organization. Makeshift marketing efforts spread between technical writers, IT managers, and corporate communications teams can lead to an inconsistent message and multiple misconceptions. Some effective communication “myths” might even surprise you.

Find out how Broadcom successfully plans and executes their project communication strategy. We’ll examine the high level components of a corporate communication strategy. This includes:

  • Identifying and assessing your enterprise’s multiple audiences
  • Choosing the correct combination of communication tools and channels
  • Creating a plan and launch schedule
  • Building messages and collateral
  • Formal and casual feedback gathering techniques to ensure understanding

Company Marketing Brochure Using Adobe In-Design

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This is a marketing brochure I created for The Information Management Forum using  the CS6 version of Adobe In-Design:

Rick Schwarz Marketing Brochure

Front and back of brochure

Rick Schwarz In Design Marketing Brochure

Inside of brochure

Click here to view a PDF version of this brochure: Rick Schwarz IMF Marketing Brochure


Google Plus Hangout Interview

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This is an interview I conducted with a bobblehead collector using the On-Air Hangout feature from Google Plus.

You can also find this video with some background information on

Hi, I’m Rick…

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Rick Schwarz Marketing Analyst

The only predictable element of life is its unpredictability. When I graduated from the University of Georgia, a career in marketing and communications never crossed my mind. While technically not an entrepreneur, an entrepreneurial spirit has served me well. The willingness to learn, fail, and improve enables me to succeed.

As a Social Media and Marketing Analyst for, I specialize in social media, content creation, SEO, advertising, PR, and analytics. I enjoys connecting with bobblehead enthusiasts around the globe and promoting the brand to new audiences on a daily basis. In an age where “content is king,” my creativity knows no bounds.

I’ve accomplished a lot in a relatively short amount of time while managing three separate and unique brands at Key social media metrics are up across the board, including increased brand awareness, community engagement, and sales conversions. I’ve established new content channels and vastly expanded the content library with a variety of multimedia. Keyword-rich and relevant content has also led to improved search rankings for short and long-tail keywords.

From kickboxing class to long runs, I enjoy staying active and pushing myself to the physical brink. Born and raised in Savannah, GA, I treasure St. Patrick’s Day, beautiful Tybee Island, and everything the coast has to offer. Saturdays in the fall are reserved for Georgia football. Go Dawgs!