The relationship between information technology (IT) staff and other professionals has been lampooned in a variety of comedies, like sitcoms or sketch shows like Saturday Night Live. However entertaining these may be, are they founded on a shadow of fact or just a perception? This interesting information came from the Lucidea blog in their post, “The IT Totem Pole and the Information Professional.”

I know many believe that IT professionals do not place the same value on your work as you do. But really, who does? We are in a generation of “me me me”, and no one will react to your needs as fast as you want them to. It is also important to add perspective to the situation. IT does have different priorities than you, as they should. They are focused on items such as revenue generation or e-commerce, the website, the enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, etc. Unfortunately, this means that knowledge systems or the corporate library are pretty low on the totem pole.

This doesn’t mean your working relationship with IT is doomed forever and ever. There are strategies you can employ to make it better. For starters, suggest that they license or subscribe to software that enables you to build and manage your own system. If you select a vendor who provides regular updates and upgrades, this could be a win-win for everyone.

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.