Every enterprise requires, as Ralph Loura explains, “end to end business insight to generate competitive advantage, and it’s hard to gain insight if the business is arms length away from the data and the systems and the processes that support business insight.”
Loura explains that one of the historical challenges with technology has been that most IT systems have traditionally taken years to deploy and are supported on timelines and lifecycles that are inconsistent with the dynamic business needs of the organization, which has, in some cases, caused technology to become a business disabler instead of a business enabler.
“It wasn’t too long ago,” explains John Dodge, “when speed didn’t matter, or was considered an enemy of a carefully laid out IT strategy based largely on lowest cost.” However, speed and agility are now “a competitive imperative. You have to be fast in today’s marketplace and no department feels the heat more than IT, according to the Enterprise CIO Forum Council members.”
“If you think in terms of speed and the dynamic nature of business,” explains Joseph Spagnoletti, “clearly the organization couldn’t operate at that pace or make the necessary changes without IT woven very deeply into the work that the business does.”
Spagnoletti believes that cloud computing, mobility, and analytics are the three technology enablers for the timely delivery of the information that the organization requires to support its constantly evolving business needs.
“Embedding IT into an organization optimizes a business’s competitive edge,” explains Bill Laberis, “because it empowers the people right at the front lines of the enterprise to make better, faster and more informed decisions — right at the point of contact with customers, partners and clients.”
Historically, IT had a technology-first mindset. However, the new IT prime directive must become business first contact, embedding advanced technology right at the point of contact with the organization’s business needs, enabling the enterprise to continue its mission to explore new business opportunities with the agility to boldly go where no competitor has gone before.