5 Questions Your “IT Dept” Needs To Ask YOU!
If your “IT Dept.” or partner is not asking YOU the right questions about your business, find one that will!
Are you confident that your business is on the path to becoming digital-ready? Do you believe you are agile enough to beat out your competition and carve out a top spot in the future economy? I suspect not many of us are… If fact – there are numbers that back up just how uncertain we feel.
A global survey of business leaders undertaken by Fujitsu tells us that 75% of business leaders say that they expect their sectors will fundamentally change in the next 5 years. What’s more, more than half – 52% believe their organizations will not exist in their current form in just five years’ time. I repeat NOT EXIST in their current form.
As you close out your figures for end-of-quarter or EOFY, and launch into budgeting and planning for the next one, three, or five years, is “no longer existing in your current form” a risk that you’ve factored into your forecasts?
Fact: Technology can threaten your business’ very existence…
…if not implemented strategically, systematically and within an ecosystem of partnerships. Why? It’s no news that disruptive technologies are eating through almost all sectors. IT is no longer “an industry” in and of itself. Today business technology is the foundation and driver of all industries. The pressure is now on for every company today to be a technology company, irrespective of whether technology directly drives the bottom line.
Being able to survive and complete in this environment means that not only do you need to understand the nature of new and constantly evolving technologies themselves, but to also master innovative ways to tailor, implement and embed this technology with your people, processes and data. After all it’s your people, processes and data, which are the heart of your business, that will adopt and work with those new technologies to streamline processes, boost efficiency, and possibly give rise to totally new products services, and even new revenue streams, previously unimagined.
Done well, the combination of new technologies with your people, processes and data will take you to all-new levels of efficiency and possibly all-new heights. Done poorly, not even the most ground-breaking technology in the world will save your business from becoming obsolete!
What today’s leaders in the digital economy are doing right
Businesses that stand out or are growing into market leaders in their sectors today will survive and thrive in the digital age because they use technology strategically to:
- Build their own ecosystem’s internally to add capacity to their people, processes and data;
- Draw on and bring together previously disparate, even competitive, industrial sectors to build partnerships in highly unexpected and disruptive ways;
- Elevate the consumer to emperor-like status by using technology tools to redefine and tailor their user and customer experiences; and
- Build collaborative and governance ecosystems in their businesses and with partners that will enable them to maintain reputation and trust, as well as flex, scale and transform again as required.
How can your business get to this point? It definitely, as they say, takes a village – a network of effective partnerships. Have you noticed how many times we’ve mentioned partnership in this article already 😉
But how do you find great partners that you can be sure are right for your digital-age business?
On the business technology front, it all starts with asking yourself “How do I view IT in my business?” and then finding the right partner to ask YOU “Where do you want your business to go? And how can you leverage your IT to get you there?”
Ask yourself the question: How do you view IT in your business?
- Do you see IT as a just a tool for your business to get the job done? Is it just a must have, like the lights, power and plumbing, that you just need to work? YES/NO
- Do you see IT as a growth enabler? Business technology can no longer just quick-fixed by the IT Dept. but must be the strategic link that will unite and drive growth across all your business. YES/NO
- Do you have the right technology partner to help your business build a digital transformation strategy, take advantage of exponential opportunities to scale, and still be around in five years’ time? YES/NO
If you’ve answered NO-YES-NO, then you’re already on the right track! You know you want to leverage your business technology better and now you want to find the right partner to help you take it next level!
Finding the right IT partner: How does your IT partner view your business?
There are lots of tips and tricks guides out there about what businesses “need to ask” potential business technology partners – what they offer, who they’re partnered with, what their agreements and support is like, what their track record in serving other entities is like…and these are all important questions. But any business partner worth their weight will have built answering these questions into their fundamental consultation process.
If you’re shopping around for strategic IT guidance to propel your growth, what you really need to be looking for first up is a business technology partner that knows the questions they need to ask you!
If your business technology/IT partner has not or is not asking you these 5 questions off the bat – you need to find one that will! Taking a strategic approach to your business technology designed around the answers to these initial 5 questions will ensure that your business can leverage and use technology to solve real business problems, generate real business outcomes, and thrive and survive now, in five years’ time and beyond.
- What is your business purpose?
- What does a typical day in your business look like?
- Where are the bottlenecks in your organization in getting projects done/changes made/products sold, etc.?
- Do you have documented processes in place that your team respects and works to?
- What are your business objectives – now and in five years’ time?
Do you see the word “technology” or “IT” on that list? No – that’s right – not even once. The conversation about strategic business technology has to start with your IT partner truly understanding your business, who you are, what you believe, and where you want to go big picture – your people, processes, and data.
The simple truth is that if your IT Dept./partner/consultant isn’t having these conversations up-front and often with your business leaders, then no amount of even then best tech on the planet will have your business thriving and leading the pack in five years’ time.
At Maxsum, we’re all about people, processes, insights and strategy first. Contact us today or Call 1300MAXSUM to talk about building the right business technology strategy from top-down, bottom-up and line-of-business out.
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