Changes in the business environment have forced organizations to take new and exciting approaches to the overall development of their operations. Technology has moved to a more centralized function that fosters competitive global business strategy. As organizations seek to retain and grow their market positions they will also need to change their I.T. perspective from a business enhancing function to one co-mingled and central to the business itself.
IT strategy has been predominately included at a functional level subordinate to operations. As part of the transformation from brick & mortar mentality to virtual perspective the IT functionality becomes a central strategic platform where other strategic considerations emulate. Constant new technology requires the ability to create a solid but adaptable platform that allows integration and removal of new applications with relative ease.
The advantage of virtual organizations is that it aligns more with a global market that is not limited by location. It is able to traverse time, space, and distance to service customers (Kohli & Grover, 2008). Such businesses have a reach that moves beyond physical restrictions as a small company into a much larger world (i.e.Alaska to China). Technological differences within these regions require adaptability that spans borders.
As organizations partner and work in collaboration it is these new platforms that allow for digital information sharing that creates higher levels of intra-organizational efficiencies. These digital niches foster stronger market advantages (Rai et al. 2012). The more service holes that can be filled the more seamless the intra-organizational efforts and the stronger their marketability.
Bharadwaj, et.al. (2013) identified four evaluative themes in IT strategy to define the next generation of insights as the scope of digital business strategy, the scale of that strategy, the speed of the strategy and the source of value creation. Organizations that desire to stay ahead of the digital curve will need to have well defined strategies that capture a greater percentage of market share while creating higher levels of efficiencies among collaborating companies. This can only happen if the companies design puts technology as its very core in developing its strategic market approaches.
-Use a central core platform integrated into the main strategy.
-Find niches and inefficiencies between collaborating companies.
-Integrate adaptive technology.
-Use technology to enhance market influence.
-Collaborate with related complementary organizations.
Bharadwaj, et. al. Digital business strategy: toward a next generation of insights. MIS Quarterly, 37 (2).
Kohli, R., and Grover, V. (2008). Business Value of IT: An Essay on Expanding Research Directions to Keep up with the Times. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 9 (1)
Rai, A, et. al. (2012). Interfirm IT capability profiles and communications for cocreating relational value: evidence from the logistics industry. MIS Quarterly, 35 (1)