With today's focuses on business intelligence, customer relationship management and knowledge management, the term "user" is inappropriate. This omnipresent term is the predominant information technology (IT) label for business personnel who require information to perform their work and who perform their work on information systems and technologies. We must find a new term to refer to those people who, in fact, perform the real value work of the enterprise.
The only other industry that emphasizes the term user is the substance-abuse industry where the term means someone who has an addiction to a harmful substance. At best, the term user implies lack of empowerment or choice someone who has to "use" something provided them; but as we clearly know, employees who are not able to have their information needs met by the production databases often choose to create and maintain their own private, proprietary databases. Outsourcing IT is the ultimate choice of management dissatisfied with the quality of the information and information services received for the price paid.
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