An article in CIO Magazine by Chris Potts discusses the difference of running IT “like” a business versus “as” a business. He says, and I agree, running it as a business does not work.
Is it Time to Reset Your IT Strategy?
From the article linked above “With the bulk of IT spending shifting from investment in new and exciting technologies to maintaining and replacing existing ones, applying sound business discipline has kept that spending under control and has driven a necessary focus on IT operational performance and efficiency.”
Potts goes on to say later in the article “your IT department isn’t a business. It is, after all, a part of a business: a significant contributor to a value chain, not a self-contained value chain of its own. And the harder you try to create a separate value chain for IT, the harder it becomes for the IT department to become integrated with the business of which it is truly part.”
And this statement, as if it were from one of our textbooks, “After the technology-centric strategy, then the efficiency-centric one, the strategic IT focus is now on exploiting technology to create new business value. Today’s successful CIO is one that is primarily valued as leader of a corporate strategy in which the company is an “expert customer” of IT. Managing operational delivery of IT services in a businesslike way is simply expected, if the CIO still does it at all. ”
What do you think? Should IT be run “as” a business or “like” a business?