Author: Gary Rush

IT as a Strategic Partner

I’ve been reading about Data Warehouses and Business Intelligence – good reading – but noticed a concept that has been around since the late 1970’s, regarding the relationship between IT and business, that I believe needs to change.

IT has been positioned to support business; that business is their customer.  When IT views business as their customer, they work hard to support them, which is good.  The reverse, however, is a problem.  When the “business units” view IT as a support function they endure their presence.  Today, with the growth of Big Data, business intelligence, e-commerce, etc., IT needs to be a strategic partner

A Strategic Partner

Making a shift to view IT as a strategic partner with “business units” is crucial.  Using Big Data effectively and developing useful business intelligence requires both the business involvement – they know their requirements, and technology involvement – they know how to deliver.  But, it’s more than that.  New technology and new uses of data emerge daily.  When IT waits for the business to come to them with a need, business is generally in a reactive mode.  When companies strategically tie business and IT as partners they have an advantage as IT can approach business with new ideas, new uses of technology and data; and business can come to IT with ideas for how to use data and technology, enabling them to be more proactive.  This enables businesses to be more cutting-edge, and more of a leader in their industry rather than reacting to what others have done.  Having better business intelligence about customers, services, products, and the market can provide a company with many advantages.

“How to” make this happen

One of the symptoms of the server/customer relationship is that when IT h