“We have some of the best IT operational metrics in the industry,” she said. “We have lean staffing, a Net Promoter Score in the 90s, 100% availability for our systems, all while the company is growing exponentially.”
She said running Nutanix software is allowing her team to begin adopting machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP).
Crocodile Amongst Dinosaurs
Pfeiffer also constantly rolls out new products and test-drives them internally. The CIO expresses frustration with enterprise IT vendors, who, she said, seem to spend more time looking to the past than to the future.
“About 70% of the resources of enterprise IT is expended on activities that are called KTLO, Keep The Lights On, activities,” Pfeiffer said. “That’s a lot of effort to keep the old systems up and running, which means we never have the mental, emotional or physical bandwidth to design and think through anything new.”
While consumer technologies have become more and more sophisticated, IT managers often make “safe” choices that preclude the same level of disruption and consumer satisfaction.
“It’s an abject failure of enterprise IT vendors, to fail to recognize how consumer technology has completely, profoundly leap-frogged them,” said Pfeiffer. “But, also, it is a failure on the part of me and my peers, that we don’t demand better, that we continue to make the safe choices.”
IT leaders also need to modernize the way that we staff our positions. “We need to redefine our roles, how we search for and find people for those roles, and even the models of employment themselves.”
She sees Nutanix as a bridge to get people out of the old mode and untied from technology choices made over the past two decades. “My work with Nutanix is about the survival and progression of IT,” she said. “It’s enabling IT to thrive like the crocodile.”
Building a Talent Pool for Disruption
Pfeiffer looks for talent in a variety of underrepresented populations. She is on the board of Girls in Tech (GIT), a global non-profit that works to eradicate gender inequality in the field by educating and empowering women to pursue jobs in high-tech industries and startups. Active in more than 30 countries, the organization offers everything from coding courses to bootcamps and hackathons and startup competitions regardless of age or profession.