Monday, August 8, 2016

"CIO Master" Book Tuning XXXXXXXI: Running a Steadfast Digital IT

Running steadfast digital IT means that IT has to not only improve its own efficiency and speed, but also the overall organizational agility and maturity.

Enterprise IT is reinventing its tarnished reputation from a reactive support center to a proactive strategy partner, from an overloading help desk to an adaptive changing organization. “Steadfast,” is perhaps a pertinent adjective to articulate the bi-model of IT organizations today: Keep steady for sustaining the business's bottom line, but also move fast with the accelerating speed to drive the organization’s digital transformation.

“Keep the light on,” is always fundamental for running IT smoothly: With increasing speed of changes, keep steady doesn't mean be static or slow to change. IT needs to do a better job of quantifying the value of the services they provide, measurements go beyond KPIs that focus on the warranty of the services. IT owns delivery of one of any organization's key assets - information. Information is the lifeblood of digital businesses to run a highly intellectual and highly effective organization. However, information is also like the perished food, you have to process and deliver it timely, to ensure the right people getting the right information in making timely and effective decisions. There are “innate risks” in Information Management, keeping IT steady also means to have abilities for managing risks and opportunities accordingly, with the balancing act along a continuum of risks and rewards. Only through accomplishing these critical goals, IT can reach the upper level of maturity with operational efficiency and business effectiveness.


A steadfast IT would also put its emphasis on speed, agility, beyond stability: With increasing speed of changes in the digital era, IT must SPEED UP. The type of speed issues in the traditional IT organization (such as IT slow to change) comes from gaps created between IT and the rest of the company. When there is no willingness to serve users with the controlling mentality, and on the other way round, no appetite from users to involve IT, then IT has been perceived as a laggard in their organizations. The goals to accelerate IT is to achieve strategic responsiveness and organizational flexibility of the business. Enterprise leaders are increasingly looking to the IT function to introduce beneficial change into their business models to improve strategic performance, enforce customer intelligence and to position the enterprise for future industry leadership, etc. IT should be more integration focused rather than re-inventing the wheel with most custom development that takes place. With emerging digital technology trends such as SMAC (social, mobile, analytics and cloud), many IT organizations now explore the consumer based model -running faster, nimble and resilient IT with digital speed, to focus on IT agility -the IT capability and capacity to adapt to the changes. Because IT can no longer feel like it has a monopoly on delivering solutions to the business. At the higher level of maturity, IT needs to run as a business' innovation engine. You need to make sure, that your company has a steady flow of fresh ideas floating in your innovation pipeline, and, therefore, you need a methodological platform facilitated via IT that allows you to do that. A steadfast IT means DOING MORE with INNOVATION.


Running steadfast digital IT means that IT has to not only improve its own efficiency and speed, but also the overall organizational agility and maturity. It intends to manage two coherent IT delivery modes: One focuses on stability to “keep the lights on,” the fundamental IT responsibility to support business and serve internal customers, the other is even more aggressively explore new possibilities and emergent opportunities for improving the top-line business growth and digitize touch points of the end customer experience. Hence, IT can unleash its full digital potential and improve the overall business agility and maturity.

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