Service - BP&T communication

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Premier Alliance is committed to providing thought leadership through its 360 degree Intelligence Delivery approach to consulting. This document will help businesses as they consider whether to establish an Information Technology Strategy, and if they choose to proceed, what will they need to consider.

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Service - BP&T communication

  1. 1. Business Performance and Technology Services Information Technology Strategies – Do I need one? By Mark Delane, Director January 2012Premier Alliance is committed to providing thought leadership through its 360 degreeIntelligence Delivery approach to consulting. This document will help businesses as theyconsider whether to establish an Information Technology Strategy, and if they choose toproceed, what will they need to consider.Why would my business need an Information Technology Strategy? – This is a top-of-mind question for both senior IT professionals and senior management of manycompanies. Often this question surfaces as a result of systems issues that have surfacedor due to questions from active Board Members. As with most issues, it is clearly seniormanagement’s role to anticipate both issues and opportunities, and create an action planto optimize business results.There are a number of compelling proactive reasons to develop a comprehensiveInformation Technology Strategy that justify making this more than a reactive exercise: *Information is probably one of our most important assets. We live in atechnology and data driven society. Access to key information can often make thedifference in whether businesses are successful or fail. Acquiring, managing,safeguarding and reporting information are critical for managers who need to make theirkey business decisions on a timely basis. Without accurate information, managers arelike a pilot flying blind without instruments. Businesses plan for many other assets, whyshouldn’t they plan for an asset as critical as Information and the technology thatprovides it? *The Marketplace is changing at light speed. We are bombarded daily withnew hardware and software offerings from an ever-changing array of vendors.Information technology is omnipresent in our lives. Devices that were formerly simpletelephones are now really small computers. We are all tethered to the Internet and live ina technology-driven world where it is almost impossible for busy executives to staycurrent with the technology changes around them. Are we ahead or behind our
  2. 2. competition? The answer to that key question can be found in an effective InformationTechnology Strategy.  Business Process Improvements can no longer be done without corresponding Information Technology changes. All businesses need to make regular process changes to keep up with changing customer demands. Few processes today are purely manual and technology provides the key to personnel efficiency. Unfortunately, technology changes often take significant time to develop, test and implement. Management must therefore plan for these needed process or business changes and ensure a forward looking Plan has been developed to meet the business needs at an affordable cost.  Acquisition and divestiture has become an everyday occurrence in American business. With each of these major events, the new entity’s business processes and systems will need to be harmonized or integrated with the acquirer’s Information Technology. When Management does not anticipate these events and prepared an Information Technology Strategic Plan that provides the flexibility to meet these sudden, significant changes it can have a significant adverse effect on the company’s stated objectives in making the acquisition or divestiture.If these situations resonate with your business, then what are the key considerations incompleting an Information Technology Strategic Plan? We believe managementshould take the following into account:  What are your 3-year Business Objectives?  What is the quality and cost of your Information Technology people, processes and systems today?  Where is your Industry going in terms of technology?  What major business changes do you anticipate?  What are the expectations of your shareholders and Board?  How do you increase assurance that you have sufficient security on your information?  How can you take advantage of emerging technologies?  What major actions do you need to consider- and when, in order to have an effective Technology approach?  What should you plan to spend on Information Technology in the next 2 to 3 years?

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