While each IT team is unique, there are a few common reasons why IT teams are formed. Some IT teams are permanent, while others exist for a temporary period of time to achieve a specific outcome, and are then disbanded.
These teams are focused on operating technology infrastructure (such as networks, data centers and Web services), monitoring them and ensuring services and systems are available and performing normally to support business operations. These teams are often called IT service management (ITSM) teams and their main objective is to keep the IT ecosystem up and running. Operations teams are permanent and frequently sophisticated monitoring and command-center-type infrastructure support them.
These teams are assembled to solve a specific problem, implement a system or make a change. Projects are, by definition, temporary endeavors, so once the project is completed, it is common for the team to either disband (with team members assigned elsewhere) or the entire team to be transitioned to a different project. IT project teams are typically focused on a single release or group of releases, but very rarely “own” a system once it goes live.
These teams are similar to both operations and project teams. IT support teams are permanent, which (like operations teams) execute IT service management functions to help keep business operations up and running smoothly. The work of these team is also similar to project teams as they also address specific problems. IT support teams are often thought of as an operations team assigned to complete many mini-projects each day.
These teams (also sometimes known as IT business-support teams) are permanent and tasked with owning, managing and improving the IT systems of a specific business process. These teams are often staffed with analysts, project managers and data experts and partner with project teams to deliver specific outcomes.