I’ve been doing a lot of research over the past few months on the classic IT Business Alignment issue, and am putting the final touches on a white paper that will offer a definition of IT Business Alignment and present a framework for how an organization can start toward the goal of achieving better alignment. Until then, I want to briefly talk about what IT Business Alignment isn’t.
While reading CIO magazine the other day (yes, the actual print edition), I came across one of those sponsored ads that looks like an article – “An IT Focus on Process”. The ad-article immediately caught my attention due to my focus on process and process improvement. As I read, I’m thinking there’s some pretty good stuff here – a focus on structure processes, need for organizational alignment – then it came. The hook, the savior, the thing you need to achieve IT Business Alignment: Software. Yep, buy our software because it does all these great things that will allow you to achieve IT Business Alignment.
Whether or not the software actually does these things I don’t know. It may be the greatest software ever written. But IT Business Alignment isn’t software. If buying software is all we need to do to achieve IT Business alignment, why is it still a problem after 30+ years?
Companies are constantly pushing for the one thing that will enable an organization to achieve alignment – maybe that is why the issue has, in some circles, become stale. People go off, buy the software, install it, and then wonder why they aren’t magically aligned. They focus on the technology, maybe glance at the process, are blind to the people and wonder why things don’t go as planned. How about a new approach: Focus on the process while engaging and involving the people to prepare for the technology.
Why not give it a shot?
Let me know your thoughts!