One of the greatest challenges facing companies today is how to continually derive business value out of the tremendous data they’re amassing.
One clear way, it appears, is to shift your company’s focus to one that is data-driven, which means adopting a business-led IT strategy. As I’ve mentioned, research shows that companies that are data-driven are more productive and perform better than those that aren’t.
If you compare data-driven companies to non-data-driven companies, you’ll also find that their IT organizations look very different. At data-driven companies, IT has become an integral part of the business team. They are actively involved in business planning and execution. They are seen as business-enablers not infrastructure managers. And their value is calculated in dollars generated, not just dollars saved. As such, they not only have a seat at the boardroom table but typically a voice as loud, if not louder, than some of their business counterparts.
However, for most companies today, there is still no “IT” in team, meaning either IT or the business (or both) still views IT in traditional support/problem resolution roles or change is occurring but slowly.
Making the transformation boils down to a big change in mindset, which means breaking old habits among business and IT teams. The (bad) habits of IT organizations run years – and, in many cases, decades – deep. The (bad) habits of business organizations, meanwhile, can run generations deep.
However, companies that successfully position themselves to compete in The Second Machine Age will need to learn now how to pass the baton to the next generation of business leaders, and this includes IT.
By the nature of what they do and the industry in which they play, some companies, such as Nielsen, are more ahead of the curve than others. But, as with any other major shift, there will be some surprising winners… and losers.
Where you or your company falls will depend on a number of factors, including the role of IT within their organization and the structure of your leadership. The question is, is “IT” in your business team?