Despite the fact that the IT industry is light years ahead of Broadcast Engineering in implementing service management processes and general governance, individual IT departments still experience resistance. Reichental relays recent experience with the difficulties in putting a governance program in place at O’Reilly Media. When you read through the article, try substituting Engineering every time he says IT.

The article touches on some of the same ideas that I did in “A Few Words About Processes.” But Reichental goes further and talks about individual processes and the whole idea of governance and bureaucracy in a technology organization.

One of the key ideas that governance focuses on is making decisions that benefit the goals of the whole organization. A technology purchase might be good for a particular show or producer, but is it worth it for the whole company? Will a project have your Engineering group rushing like mad to install some new, expensive piece of gear that will look great on air for a little while and never get used again or will you work on something that is meaningful to building long term viewership and revenue streams?

Reichental sums it up this way, “Governance requires that the scarce resource of technology capacity be diligently distributed across the organization for overall business success.” The article goes on to argue that failing to set up some form of governance, tailored to your organization, “will radically hinder our abilities to do the important things we want to achieve.” IT and Engineering are can’t move beyond being cost centers that hurt the business without governance. We have negative, untrustworthy corporate reputations without governance. With a successful governance program in place, engineers become key business partners that enhance the on air product.