2. Make choices
In order to respond quickly and adequately to new developments, it is important to be technologically up-to-date with the IT partner. In principle, active life-cycle management forms the best basis for innovations. This ensures that extensive IT projects do not always have to be carried out before new functions and applications can be put into use. However, keeping the entire IT environment fully up-to-date with the latest developments can be very expensive and is often not necessary for a stable run and maintain situation. This means that sometimes choices have to be made. These choices are made on the basis of a business case. Where is it important to stay up-to-date and where is it sufficient to maintain the IT environment without making concessions to interoperability (possibility to link between systems), continuity, availability and security? This is captured in the IT strategy of the organization. This creates the frameworks that ensure that IT is flexible and agile in those areas for which it is required that innovations can be implemented quickly.
3. Determine process
In the article The impact of DevOps on outsourcing, the impact of the working method on innovation and the collaboration with the IT partner is discussed in more detail. The way in which the collaboration with the external IT partner is managed is especially important for the success of innovation in IT outsourcing. On the one hand, we know the traditional way, where the performance of the IT service provider is assessed on the basis of operational KPIs. On the other hand, we know the modern way, which involves shared responsibility, mutual trust and KPIs that are linked to demonstrable contributions to the objectives of an organization. Successfully meeting the expectations of innovations also requires clarity per subject about the method to achieve innovation. In concrete terms: do you work in short sprints, in which development and operations work together iteratively, do you work according to the project-based methodology of the Waterfall, in which tasks are performed sequentially and responsibilities are assigned, or do you choose a combination of the methods? If there is no clarity about this, a mismatch in expectations is lurking and this is at the expense of the innovative power of the organization.