Alexander Niemi

Business Consultant within Strategy & Tech, and Operating Models

The Unstoppable Marriage between Business and Tech/IT Strategies

2018-nov-14 10:44:00

In November, me and a couple of colleagues at Centigo visited the Gartner Symposium / ITxpo in Barcelona with the intention to validate our own focus, methods and ways of working and at the same time gain inspiration from Gartner´s research. I have several takeaways from these days, where one specific relates to that organizations no longer should develop separate strategies for business and IT. Here is why:

Business strategies isolated from IT/Tech is like a dinosaur – it will die and disappear

After a quick scan of the business world, it is evident that technology is the core of most successful organizations nowadays. Just consider Facebook, Amazon, Google, Alibaba etc., the list is long. A commonality between these organizations is that they are digital and technology-driven by heart.

Do you think that these organizations first develop a business strategy, and then aligns an IT/Tech Strategy? Not really, these organizations develop a technology-driven business strategy as that is the only way to stay competitive, drive business growth, innovation and optimization.

New arising technologies drives business growth, innovation and optimization as they mature

Internet of things, Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Intelligence, Machine Learning, Digital twins etc are concepts that are used either to optimize the organization or to drive innovation and growth. These technologies are just infants and will in the coming years and decades continue to evolve. What does that mean? The more mature these technologies becomes, the more use cases that appears, the more organizations will utilize them to optimize, innovate or grow the business.

Even today, at the infant stage of these technologies, many organizations are investing millions – investment decisions derived from a discussion of what is best for the business. Decisions that are completely based on how technology can be used as a cornerstone of the business direction, and thus as a competitive “weapon”.

As of this, my view is that it becomes more and more evident that a separation of business and technology/IT-strategies is an obsolete way of looking at the world.

Don’t you worry – there is still a need for underlying strategies supporting a technology-driven business strategy

In the same way as you need a strategy for your supply chain, HR, Marketing Department, Finance department etc, you would need a strategy for e.g. Architecture and IT Infrastructure. In other words, strategic plans enabling the technology-driven business strategy.

If you are in process of either updating or developing your business strategy, use the right approach - a technology-centric approach to understand how technology can drive business growth, innovation and optimization. Hence, avoid develop a separate business and IT/Technology strategy.

At Centigo, we utilize a framework that we call Assent. Assent is a Tech transformation framework covering both traditional components of an IT Strategy, but also traditional business components. An integrated approach for developing a technology-driven business strategy.

If you would like to discuss this further, do not hesitate to reach out to me at alexander.niemi@centigo.se.

Tags: Automation CIO TBM Nydanande_teknik_och_affärsmodeller Affärsutveckling Digital_Transformation