David Gurteen's latest Knowledge-Letter contains an interesting piece, Don't let the IT department stifle Social Computing as they did Lotus Notes!:
Ten years ago or more when I was working as a Lotus Notes consultant and developer, I saw IT departments effectively emaciate Lotus Notes by insisting that Notes applications be developed by a centralized team and driven by a rigorous functional specification. This was not the way to develop Notes applications - it curtailed its widespread use and ensured the development of unusable applications. I wrote about an alternative to this back in 1998!
While I don't want to point fingers at the IT department alone, projects must include all stakeholders at the right levels to be successful. That almost sounds too obvious. But as David describes in his story, anyone can throw the wrench into a project, whether it is leadership, people affected(users, employees), change agents, contractors, project implementors... Dilbert's colleague, Mordak the Preventer lives in more than just IT. [Image source - Scott Adams, 2007.]
And in David's example, it is easy to see how such a situation could arise. A "loose cannon" does something they aren't supposed to do with technology; the IT department gets blamed for letting this happen; IT then sets direction on what is allowed; these get interpreted as being very restrictive; new applications are hamstrung. Rinse and repeat. And of course, this happens in pretty much every department.
I wonder how successful the latest Notes and other big collaboration suites are doing in these environments? Just because you have wiki-like capability in MOSS, are the organizations using it?