Monday, June 6, 2016

Running IT as a Business Energizer

Whatever & wherever the business needs are, IT needs to proactively solve the problems with setting priority right, and recharge business via innovation.

The majority of IT organizations today have still been perceived by their business partners as a cost center and support function which drags down the speed of business change, and many IT organizations also suffer from change fatigue due to work overloading and under-staffing. Therefore, forward-looking IT organizations must reinvent their tarnished reputation, and businesses should empower their IT leaders to drive digital transformation more proactively, run IT as a business energizer to catalyze growth and achieve not just IT “changeability,” but overall organizational agility.

Information technology should be seen by any business as a “digital transformer”: Thanks for the latest lightweight digital technologies, IT organization is shifting from a monolithic industrial mode to mosaic digital style. More importantly, IT is switching from inside-out operation-driven to outside-in customer focus. Because, nowadays, IT is a significant part of the business strategy, and not simply as a tool or mechanism to support business goals, but a business enabler and digital engine. Running IT as a business energizer means that IT is no longer live in a silo as a commodity no one care about if the “lights are on.” Rather, there are very few businesses today can state that IT does not play a significant role in the long-term strategic positioning of the company, and all forward-thinking organizations claim they are in information management business. An energized IT delights customers and enables digital flow, also it’s in conjunction with the business as a strategic partner, not be seen as in competition with the business.

Running IT as a business energizer via decomplexitizng business processes and enforcing organizational capabilities: Simplicity is an optimal state of complication. It means IT can add a necessary layer of complexity in order to build differentiated business capabilities. On the other hand, to energize is to de-complexitizing via consolidation, integration, modernization, innovation, optimization. etc. You can not deliver value without "de-complexitizing" and make transparent what is being delivered and how or what is being delivered. The gaps between IT and business are often the causes of unnecessary complication either strategically or technically. Unless there is a collaborative & understanding environment, the perception is that IT is raising roadblocks. As part of and in concert with the top management team, it’s crucial to break down old school silos of thought, IT and business are not separate departments. IT does not run the show and should not hold up the business and business does not own the goals and own the solution to the tough problems. In the company, every “part” of the business needs to work together to be successful, collaboration, transparency, respect, and clear leadership are the keys to breaking down the barriers, energize business mood, and unleash the full potential of the business.

Running IT as a business energizer to reach the full speed of the organization: Speed matters for businesses surviving and thriving: speed matters for businesses to adapt to changes; to grasp the opportunities for marketing expansion; speed matters for building the new capabilities gaining competency for the business’s continuous improvement. People and organizations could now learn faster in a time when leading strategists were arguing that the only sustainable advantage was to learn faster than your competition. The emergence of potential opportunities for exploiting digitization is likely to follow a nonlinear pattern, even with an exponential speed, as the pervasiveness of an organization's digitization journey increases. The pervasive digitization means "reduced the time to knowledge." And IT is an enabler to accelerate changes. The common element of a proactive IT is business engagement - whatever & wherever the business needs are, IT needs to proactively solve the problems with setting priority right and recharge business via innovation.

To energize business, IT has to recharge itself as well, to engage IT employees and digitalize its own processes. A good relationship between Business and IT becomes visible by clearly defining tasks, authorities, and responsibilities. Ensuring a high-performing, high-reliable and high-proactive IT is the key success factor in organizational digital transformation.


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