With firms struggling to embrace technology in their mainstream activities, there are some managers and consultants who are struggling with cloud of doubt; does information technology matter in any organization? What advantage does is bring to an organization yet the benefits that one company gets can easily be got in another company? What, with the era of open source systems, a good system purchased by a company can be purchased by competing firma too. These are the questions which are making people doubt the significance of installing very sophisticated systems in their companies. On the other hand, there are many companies which are ahead in almost everything due to correct use of technology.
This paper will look into the significance of technology in any firm and try to establish whether systems should be bought off-the shelves or whether ICT staff bring any value to the company (Pearce, 2009). It will look at the value that ICT is to the company and whether it helps the company to leverage better in competition. The approach of this is to have the pros and the cons for both views and then make a conclusion of what my standing point is.
Function of IT
IT function in an organization is invaluable. The purpose of IT specifically made for that organization, as opposed to having outsourced software from the open-source community has helped in shaping the way organizations perform their tasks generally. In any organization is to come up with a roadmap which will chart the course for the company for a period of time. It is difficult to have software and applications that are predictive of the information and use the data that have been collects for data mining purposes for that organization. It has been seen that the use of Information technology has companies make future decisions that chart the way forward.
In the process of charting this roadmap, the long-term vision of any organization must be taken into consideration and there must be considerations to be made which will assist in the accomplishments of the said goals (Kurtz, 2008). The IT function should also be a in such a way that there is delineation of the directions by use of a set of programs and project activities; this will help the regional departments of Spring/Nextel to achieve the broader goals and objectives. IT has been by all means important in the achievement of company’s decision making process. These decisions are associated with costs and benefits. The IT strategies should be within the constraints of the fiscal realities of the company. The strategy was also built for the purpose of building a consensus with the stakeholders.
The IT function is also about leveraging the resources of the company so the projects and programs which have been identified will be accomplished. As opposed to having outsourced software in the organization, it is worth noting that software which is tailored for a specific company still has invaluable importance to that organization. The function has helped in the adoption of service delivery which will ensure that the resources of the company with the people in the company are optimized by delineation of roles and responsibilities, project partnership and effective decision making. It has been smooth all the way in attaining services for any company (Pride, 2009). With this, it is evident that the function of information technology is something not to be undermined.
IT has had important function in projecting the investment-worthiness of the company. Investors have always been using technology to get the way forward in their investments.
IT is not worth the investment
There are other arguments that have shown that IT is not worth the hassle and investment that the company can take to get it. What, with the availability of software in the open-source community. There is no need for the company management to get the software at high prices and yet they can still get the same product from the open-source community. It is therefore right to say that the strive to get the best technologies in place should not go far so that it costs the company millions of investments. There is need to have cheaper and yet effective software from the open-source community.
Of late, there has been a collaboration of programmers, the best, coming together to get work have on the best of programs that have seen the light of the day. Most of these programs have been deployed in big companies like Oracle, Google, and Yahoo. The direction that this is taking is towards the sourcing of IT functions and programs (DuBrin, 2009). If this trend is adopted by many companies, then it is the way to go for many companies; taking IT as non-core for many companies.
Cloud computing is the other technology that is making IT not so much important in companies. With cloud computing, the company does not have to employ the best of experts as the systems are managed by other technocrats. With new technologies like cloud computing and particularly private cloud, there will be more tolerance for innovation and a lot of experimentation form businesses. There will be fewer barriers to creating new ways of doing businesses.
Cloud computing is the technology where the company gets the software and the applications that they use as a service. They pay for the services that they get from cloud computing service provider. They no longer need to set up expensive server-rooms and call centers. All these are becoming things of the past as software are being given as services. The platforms for executing these applications are also bought as a service (Busch, 2008). With these developments in technology, software is not taken as a core integral of the company any longer. It will pave way for prototyping and market validation of new approaches in a much faster and less expensive than before.
The other sectors of the organization will have to struggle to ensure that they are at pace with this department. Cloud computing has helped new entrepreneurs to create their own internal company as opposed to employing technical staff. It has helped to come up with open modules. It is therefore worth noting that IT is not so much a bother in today’s world. There are companies which are taking care of core IT functions.
The only thing that companies should concern themselves about is that they should be conscious of the technologies that are selling outside; with this information they can insist on the cloud providers to provide these services to them also. Cloud computing has lead to clients avoiding capital expenses in hardware and software hence vendors in hardware and software have greatly suffered in the end.
Another factor that is making IT less and less relevant is the fact that there are more freelancers and online support groups who are well versed with technology. It therefore beats logic for any company to invest heavily on IT staff yet they can get cheaper labor from the Internet. There are many opening that are present with the advent of Web 2.0. With the current technology dispensation, there is a lot to be desired concerning the Internet and technology. There are many online support forums that have been created that will help in IT and technical issues. It therefore I don’t see the hassle that management can look for IT staff.
In conclusion, I find it hard to make technology to be on the periphery. For any company to succeed, they should be sensitive about the technology they are using in the company. There should be concern on the systems they are operating on.
This is Information Age; all the processes and procedures should be in line with the latest technologies. There is no way that technology can be regarded as inconsequential in a company and still make that company to be ahead of the competition. IT is still by far the leading movers of companies and should be regarded equally important. I highly recommend that that information technology is taken seriously and still be invested for in the company.
Busch, P. (2008). Tacit Knowledge in Organizational Learning. Idea Group Inc (IGI).
DuBrin, A. (2009). Leadership: Research Findings, Practice, and Skills. Cengage Learning.
Kurtz, D. L. (2008). Contemporary Business 2009 Update. Cengage Learning.
Pearce,. (2009) Strategic Management 10E. McGraw-Hill Education (India) Pvt Ltd.
Pride, M. W. (2009). Business. Cengage Learning.