Sunday, April 30, 2017

Brainstorming The IT Role in Building Business Competency via Inquiries

The role of IT today for many organizations is a business solutionary and the builder of digital capability & competence.

Nowadays, information permeates into every corner of the business, it is the gold mine organizations need to dig for capturing the next business growth opportunities. Technology is often the disruptive force of digital innovation, as well as the crucial component of building the business capability. Hence, Information Technology should be seen by any business as a “digital transformer.” Here are a few inquiries to clarify the IT role in building business competency and improving organizational maturity.

What demand does strategy create for new information technology-enabled business capability, and how will you bring that to reality? Organizations rely more and more on technology; the IT department has more and more to overcome. The goals of running IT are about leverage information to improve decision effectiveness and apply digital technologies to lower costs, improve operations, and increase revenue. IT needs to rethink itself as an innovative and business leading organization. It has to provide both business and technical insight into how they bring success to the company as a whole instead of being a support center. There are very few businesses today that can state that IT does not play a significant role in the day to day operations or even long-term strategic positioning. Organizations need to take that into consideration when establishing strategic goals to manage their digital transformation. Forward-looking organizations declare they are in the information management business. Information comes from the analysis of the data, technologies allow for the storing, retrieving, processing, manipulation, and presentation of data. Information and technology catalyze today's digital businesses. This requires a cross-functional customer-centric paradigm for managing and operating IT/technology, drive all sorts of innovations, proactively push ideas on how to leverage technology to drive revenue growth, increase business productivity, flexibility, and agility.

What limitations are imposed on business strategy by the constraints of the IT currently used by the company and in its digital ecosystem? Modern organization has its own sophistication: The silo functions, the sea of data, the continuous digital disruption, and the pool of talents. The board and top executive team should be informed of what benefit is being delivered by IT and aware of constraints and risks. Hence, those roundtable discussions on the top should not be only centered around cost, but also on productivity improvement, business growth, talent strategy, and GRC as well. They need to scrutinize which limitations are imposed on the digital strategy by the constraints of the IT and how to empower IT for driving changes and leading digital transformation. IT plays an important role in interpreting business issues into a technology solution and an IT-enabled business capability. Also, leverage the necessary resources to solve those problems. IT has an important role to play in both improving business competency and achieving operational excellence. Make continuous attention to technical excellence and keep IT digital fit through consolidation, integration, modernization, optimization, and innovation.

What role does IT or the various functional groups play in risk management/governance in general, and in overseeing change and digital transformation of the organization? IT is in a unique position to oversee the underlying functions of the entire business, improve business efficiency, and connect the wide dots to enforce business innovation. The abundance of information brings unprecedented opportunities and risks to the organization today. Unpredictability, uncertainty and the probability of surprising emergent properties increase with the complexity of the digital ecosystem. Hence, IT needs to manage risks and practice governance discipline effectively. Understanding business as a dynamic and adaptive complex system is the starting point. IT organizations that have their own house in order and have absorbed compliance and operational risk management can move on to greater, more strategic business needs. IT is not limiting the business’s creativity, but encouraging out of the box thinking as well as systematic solutions. Those organizations that feel stifled by governance may not have matured beyond operational risk and control. Controls feel stifling not because they are trying to be innovative, rather that they are undisciplined. The effective GRC effort shouldn’t stifle innovation, rather, they have built the right mechanism to harness innovation via framing the right problems as well as setting the right prioritization, incorporated a process for change and innovation. By implementing effective GRC programs, corporations can deliver immediate benefits to the entire organization.
The role of IT today for many organizations is a business solution and the builder of digital capability & competence. IT leaders are invited to the big table for contributing to strategy making. IT staff are encouraged to think out of the box and discover a better way to do things. Still, IT is the means to the end, the real goal of running a high-performance IT organization is to improve business effectiveness, efficiency, agility, and maturity.


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