Change is rarely easy but often necessary. This is especially true in the tech field, where constant improvement and business transitions are essential to success. In other words, if you aren’t getting better and shifting your focus to meet the needs of today’s organizations, you’ve fallen behind.
That was the IT Services and Support (ITSS) Community’s situation. Not from an accomplishment perspective – it has been and continues to be a force in channel resource development — but as far as its identity. While ITSS conversations have expanded to include managed services, cloud, security and managed print and the community membership has grown more diverse, the name, ITSS, is rooted in the IT services space. We decided that ITSS needed a name that expresses how the community has evolved beyond the “pure IT” space to other technology-related fields. Hence the name change: Technology Lifecycle Services.
Expanding Our Reach and Mission
ITSS announced the transition to the Technology Lifecycle Services Community (TLS) at ChannelCon. I had the honor, as chair, of explaining the name change during our meeting, which attracted more than 50 first time attendees and scores of long-term members. The discussions at the event related to our new name and expanded mission were extremely positive.
With our focus on technology, not just IT, we can be more inclusive and generate wider ranging ideas. For example, we can explore auto industry technologies and related services issues, and extend membership options to those organizations. IoT and other emerging technologies necessitate these types of discussions, forcing us to think outside traditional IT boundaries for future business opportunities. Technology is everywhere, and we must be more open about the changes happening around us today — and in the future.
The name change formalizes what our community has become over the last few years and acknowledges the shift that’s already taken place in our membership and initiatives. The Technology Lifecycle Services is inclusionary, expands our focus, and is more relevant to our mission.
Now that the formalities of our name change are complete, we can double-down on our initiatives. One project we’ve been working on is developing a graphic to help member understand where they fit in the services lifecycle. This is a tool for self-evaluation, allowing companies to identify their roles and unique capabilities for partnering with other companies to deliver complete solutions to their respective customers.
We want to help members understand where they fit in the ecosystem and look at a broader set of opportunities that may be available to them with the right plan and some hard work. TLS crosses over with a lot of other CompTIA Communities, including the Managed Services, Cloud, and IT security technology groups, as well as the Advancing Women and Advancing Diversity in Technology Communities. Our members can leverage what they learn in those discussions, as well as their own life and work experiences to push the envelope in the services space.
Education remains a high priority. Many have praised our community podcasts for their relevant content, and we plan to build on those past successes in the coming months. Upcoming sessions will touch multiple segments on the technology lifecycle, including global collaboration standard for successful partnering, using customer satisfaction surveys to drive actions, and professional development and recruiting. You can download our current podcasts at the TLS Resource Page or directly at https://soundcloud.com/user-820721221.
Aaron Acker is VP of Business Development at Deployment Pro, a national IT deployment organization based in the Dallas/ Fort Worth area, and chair of the CompTIA Technology Lifecycle Services Community.