On Cyber Monday morning at 7 AM, I found a good deal on a piece of electronics that one of our teenagers wants for Christmas. By noon, I was itching to find out if it was shipped and if so where it was in its journey to our home. I checked again at 5:30 PM and then again at 11:00 PM. Each time I looked, I was amused by the fact that the gift was one step closer to its destination.
The fact that you can track every time a package gets handed off to someone else within seconds of that hand-off is no longer anything special. This is what everyone expects – and rightly so. After all, the hand-offs are simply time stamps plus a couple of other pieces of data associated with information about your package. It all adds up to about 5 or 6 rows of data that shows the position of the package from the source to the destination. What makes this significant is that it’s available at any time of day and I don’t even have to pick up the phone and call anybody to access it.
Here’s my point: Like it or not, what’s happening in cyberspace affects your company systems by raising the expectations of all users. When you track a package from your home laptop and see details of every move it makes, you’d have a hard time going to work the next day and putting up with a green screen CICS application on your office desktop. Your expectations for your company’s information system cannot be any lower than what you can accomplish on your laptop at home.