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Finance & IT Couples Therapy Guideline #1: Change the Views of the Relationship

Chuck Czajkowski | | July 10, 2019

Finance and IT departments can sometimes behave just a little bit like a dysfunctional married couple: each one is dependent on the other, yet they’re constantly at odds and don’t know how to speak each other’s language. So why not try resolving the issues between them by doing a little “couples therapy?”

 
According to a team of UCLA psychologists, there are five steps that couples should take in order to produce positive and lasting change in their relationships. In our recent webinar “Couples Therapy: Getting Finance & IT to Play Nice,” we discussed how you can apply these concepts to the finance-IT partnership as well.

This article will be the first in a five-part series about how to resolve tensions between finance and IT. The first step: changing the views of the relationship on both sides.

Stop the Blame Game

With different objectives, perspectives, and ways of communication, finance and IT aren’t necessarily natural partners. Due to these obstacles, business “silos” intentionally or unintentionally arise within teams and departments, causing valuable data and insights to be hidden from the rest of the organization.

This contributes to a lack of understanding that can build up resentment and outright hostility over time. The “blame game” is one of the most common signs of a problematic relationship between finance and IT. Both sides avoid taking responsibility for their role in the partnership, spending more time bickering back and forth than actually working on a solution.

In order to stop the blame game, finance and IT don’t need to become experts in each other’s field. Rather, they need to make strides toward collaboration, working together to promote their own strengths and compensate for the other’s weaknesses. Both sides need to recognize that a recurring history of positive interactions will help everyone involved be more successful.

Look at Past Interactions

Putting a stop to backbiting is just the first step when it comes to changing views of the finance-IT relationship. To do better in the future, both sides must agree that they need to put effort into improving the quality of their interactions.

Examining the history of the finance-IT partnership – and all the bumps in the road that you encountered along the way – can be helpful as an example of how to do better in the future. Is the context surrounding the relationship healthy? What are some previous instances of breakdowns in communication, and how could they have been avoided? What needs to change in order for both sides to be content?

Technology like Datavail’s Accelatis platform can help both sides get on the same page and better understand the subtle complexities in the environment. This performance monitoring software provides statistics such as CPU and memory usage, as well as application-specific metrics such as concurrent number of users and financial operations.

Instead of playing the “blame game” when things go wrong in the environment, both sides can use the software to find the true root cause of the issue. Accelatis for Hyperion provides the insights and metrics you need to resolve finance-IT conflicts before they even begin because each side sees an overlay of their data – and more importantly, what triggered what.

Make sure that both finance and IT have all the pieces of the puzzle that they need to excel at their jobs. Regular meetings where both sides can touch base will be crucial so that everyone knows what their roles and responsibilities are.

Conclusion

The first step to improving relations between finance and IT is to rethink the very foundations of the partnership. Rather than being at odds, both sides are working towards the common goal of the organization’s success.

Watch this space for the next post in our “couples therapy” series, in which we discuss how to modify the dysfunctional behavior of both finance and IT. Can’t wait to see how it all unfolds? You can watch Datavail’s complete on-demand webinar “Couples Therapy: Getting Finance & IT to Play Nice” right now.

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