by Sunil Shah

3 Ways to Use Republic Day to Elevate IT

Jan 23, 20143 mins

What are you going to do this Republic Day to ensure that you make the best of the symbolism of the occasion? We give you three ideas.

It’s that time of the year again when India sits up, and feels its chest swell with pride as it celebrates Republic Day.

Like many public holidays, Republic Day is useful for one important reason: It gives you and your team the chance to mark time. It gives you the chance to look back at the past year and figure out where you want to be at this time, next year.

In that spirit, we look at three ways you could use this Republic Day to usher in changes to your department and up your IT game.

Celebrate 64. Salespeople everywhere are wondering how they can use 64 in their marketing campaigns this weekend. Can they offer a 64 percent discount? Maybe not. How about a discount for people above 6 feet, 4 inches? (It might be a great way to dispose of those size 12 shoes that’s eating up inventory space).

What can you do? How about making a conscious effort to lower your IT fixed costs to 64 percent of your IT budget? It’s a well-known fact that 70 percent of IT budgets are spent on keeping the lights on. Many IT departments have made it a point to lower this ratio. Make use of this being India’s 64rd Republic Day and create a goal for your IT team: This time next year, our IT fixed costs should be 64 percent of our budget. You might not get there, but creating a goal that’s visible, and therefore easy to sell, will increase your chances of reaching your goal

One of the upsides? Management will love it.

Re-write your constitution. Republic Day honours the date on which the Constitution of India came into force. India’s constitution was built on the values that our forefathers believed in. These include socialism, justice, liberty, equality, fraternity, and human dignity among others.

What are the values your IT department stands for? What is it that you want your department to be known for? The Republic Day is an opportune time to ask yourself, your team, and your management that question.

Do you want punctuality (project deadlines must never be breached) to be a defining character of the IT team? Or do you think being seen as a generator of business ideas should be a value enshrined in your department’s charter?

Whatever you do, don’t take ages to decide. The Indian constitution consists of almost 80,000 words and took two years, 11 months and 18 days to build. Make sure yours doesn’t go down the same road.

Parade Your Success. Take a leaf out of one of the most visible activities surrounding Republic Day celebrations: the Republic Day parade. The parade is, among other things, a celebration of the strength, the power, and the diversity of India.

That makes Republic Day a perfect time to showcase what IT has done for your organization–without looking like a show-off. Under the garb of the Republic Day, market IT’s value to your organization.

It doesn’t take much work either. A couple of colourful posters pointing out how much easier IT has made life for staffers, or an emailer listing four (not 64, for god’s sake) ways IT has helped create a healthier bottom line. Or maybe hand out a few free tee-shirts for your team to wear at work. On the front they could point out an IT stat, like 95 percent up time. And on the back they could say, proud to be in IT.

Don’t let this Republic Day pass, without making the best of it.