I have been thinking a lot recently about some of the reasons why enterprise IT seems so antiquated in comparison to consumer IT. One of the key’s has to be the differences between the talent involved in both sectors. Enterprise IT dwarfs consumer IT in terms of global spend, but their approaches to talent acquisition cannot be more different.

In consumer IT you are constantly looking for the best resources possible to create a better product or service. Whatever your producing is your core product, and hence you want the best talent available to help you create it. Your product is your differentiator, your revenue generator.

Enterprise IT is largely a cost center, and like with any cost center the incentive inherently is towards minimization of spend. Hence while consumer IT chases talent, the key focus of enterprise IT over the last decade or so has been to take advantage of global wage arbitrage opportunities.

Now, while this difference would have been a purely theoretical observation even half a decade ago, the consumerization of IT has changed all that. For enterprise IT to even remain relevant it has to start looking at it’s approach to talent acquisition and more critically start to make a shift from being a cost center to being a clear revenue driver. Wether this means turning to big data, or creating innovative consumer-centric services enabled by IT, they have to do it fast, if not the end game will be hard fought, but the winner is clear.