CIOs don't take enough notice of application delivery issues

* CIOs are too focused on apps development and don't consider apps delivery

Let's face it; if the CIO has a recent background in technology, it is almost always in the area of applications. It is very rare to find a CIO whose last job had anything to do with the WAN. In addition, when the CIO talks with the company's senior management, it is mostly about business processes such as supply chain management and the role that key applications play in enhancing those processes. These conversations are never about topics such as MPLS or Gigabit Ethernet.

So at one level it is understandable that CIOs pay a lot more attention to application development than they do any other component of IT. However, that narrow focus has to stop and it has to stop in large part because broadening the focus of the CIO is in the best interest of the company and in the best interest of the CIO. In particular, CIOs need to realize that the IT function has two essential roles - application development and application delivery and that each role is equally important. It does not do the company or the CIO any good to spend millions of dollars to either develop or acquire an application only to find out later that the application cannot be effectively accessed by all of the intended users of that application.

What we are suggesting is that CIOs need to ensure that the IT organization take a holistic approach to application delivery. Application delivery certainly includes optimization techniques such as caching, compression and protocol acceleration. However, harking back to the last newsletter, application delivery also includes management functionality such as profiling an application to understand if applying any of these optimization techniques will do any good. It also includes analytics whereby anomalous behavior is automatically detected and the cause of the behavior eliminated before it impacts the user.

We will come back to the topic of application delivery in future newsletters.

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