imageIf you are responsible for IT in a large organisation, then one of the biggest challenges you face is the huge pressure from internal and external forces for constant change – and also to reduce your budgets. The Microsoft Chief Information Officer Tony Scott is no different. I recommend taking ten minutes to watch the video he’s just recorded “Critical Trends within IT 2010” where talks about critical trends facing the IT industry, including cloud computing, virtualization, and the ongoing need to reduce costs and improve efficiency. He also talks about the changing role of the CIO, which is becoming more central to all organisations.

This video is part of a larger series created by the Microsoft IT team (the ones who keep our internal network moving forward). Part of their role is to share their good practice with our customers. After all, they are often deploying beta versions of our new products in a live, mission-critical IT environment – so they learn a lot of things in advance of our customers.

One of the ways that they do this is through TechNet, where they run a section called “Microsoft IT Showcase: How Microsoft Does IT”. As you’re working on your IT strategy plans for the next year, and especially if you are implementing any of our new products, it makes a great additional resource to use (mainly because the pragmatic advice is based on real-world deployments, rather than theoretical designs).

They publish a wide range articles, white papers, and webcasts on issues from cost-cutting, new product deployments, to identity and access management.

I’d also recommend their video Centralized Server Virtualization Drives IT Cost Reduction, which is one of their most viewed case studies. It describes the process, the cost savings, and the user and organisational benefits of the changes “