IT is a fast-changing industry - that is something that all of us can readily accept. For that reason, companies must also be prepared to accept that any software that they have come to rely on will have a newer, better version released after a couple of years. This kind of process leads to software cycling between complexity and simplicity.
When projects are being held up by poor software, new software is brought in to fix the problem. This causes an overlap of old and new software. If the two are not fully integrated quickly enough, these transitional phases will cause more problems than they solve, leading to reduced productivity. A truth worth accepting, then, is that complexity cannot be avoided entirely, because each generation of software has its own problems.
Complexity within IT infrastructure is constant. As a company changes through mergers, data migrations, restructuring, and so on, it often cannot see a way to escape the system it has entrenched itself in over the years. It emphasises production speed and innovation over the infrastructure in the background.
If you're looking to fully integrate all of your IT systems so that they can not only enable you to work better, but adapt to any and all changes as they occur, you have to be willing to step outside of your comfort zone. Critically assess why you're using a particular piece of hardware. If it's out of habit, albeit inefficient, something has to change.
As Dee Burger of Capgemini Consulting notes in an article on the topic: "Sometimes you have to turn something off and see who yells." Once you've found that person, the rebuilding process can begin.
Make a list of every piece of software that you use on a monthly basis. Do they all communicate well with each other? Are the workarounds to integrate them complex, time-consuming and generally inefficient? To be frank, these systems likely work well to the point of remaining tolerable - but tolerable does not equate to efficient.
Implementing change requires courage, patience and a willingness to let go of this old, reliable software. It requires departments to communicate with one another. Doing so will, in the long run, lead to a more self-actualised workplace.