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Developing Business IT strategies

Developing Business/IT Strategies

Just knowing benefits and structure of management information (MIS) system is not sufficient; creating and implementing an action plan to transit from an old business design to a new business design is mandatory, then only business organizations can get benefits from using management information system. Proper plan is necessary to develop right MIS; understanding of fundamental concepts of planning and method to implement the plans correctly are very necessary.

Organizational Planning

Organizational planning process consists:

  • Building Team for making and modeling plans
  • Understanding and evaluating organization’s performance and resources
  • Analyzing the business, economic, political and societal environments
  • Predicting and evaluating the impact of future developments
  • Building a shared vision and deciding goals to achieve
  • Deciding and choosing the actions to take to achieve the goals
Strategic planning

Strategic planning is developing missions, goals, strategies and policies of the organization. It is necessary to understand strength, weakness, opportunities and threats the organization has to face. The clear understanding of these things will help to develop better plans and strategies. Strategic planning is concerned with long-terms plans, the executive managers need data from both internal system and external environment to have clear understanding of the business situations.

Tactical planning is setting of objectives and developing procedures, rules, schedules and budgets. Tactical planning is related with mid-term planning. The middle level managers make plans and strategies to ease the execution of their business processes.

Operational planning is a short-term planning to control day-to-day occurring operations. The operational planning is done to execute daily and frequently occurring tasks and activities easily. It helps the operational level staffs to perform their tasks easily and on their own

Different organizational planning methods are proposed. Two most popular methodologies for organizational planning are: scenario approach and planning for competitive advantage.

In Scenario approach a micro-world or virtual world is created; teams of managers and other planners participate in the micro-world exercise to experience and evaluate a variety of scenarios like what might happen in the real working environment. Assumptions like what will happen in four five years; how information technology will affect business in future, what will happen if new office is created or new business is started, how preferences of customers shift etc. are made; these kinds of situations are created virtually, assumptions about the situations are made and the employees will participate in the virtual micro-world, they exercise it and evaluate it.

Planning for competitive advantage is done to achieve competitive advantage over the competitors. Organizations’ study and analyze advantages, risks associated with their business processes, procedures, resources they have. Based on the finding, strategies to address risks, to increase benefits are developed. The competitive strategies like: cost leadership, product/service differentiation, growth, innovations and alliances and value chain model of business activities are considered while planning for competitive advantages. SWOT analysis of the business is also done, and based on the results of SWOT analysis strategies are developed to cash opportunities, remove weakness, increase strengths, and reduce or eliminate threats.

Business model: is a conceptual framework to understand and develop economic logic and system to enable business to deliver value to customers in reasonable cost, achieve goals and objectives. A business model is created to answers different questions like: who are our customers? What do our customers value? How can we deliver that value to our customers? How can we make money?

Business/IT planning process focuses on discovering and developing innovative approaches to address problems of customers, satisfy customers, satisfy business value goals, to solve problems and issues of the organization, to ease executing business processes. Both CEO and CIO of a company participate, manage and develop business and IT strategies to meet their customers needs and business value. The coadaptation between management and IT is very important for the success of the business/IT planning. The business/IT planning process has three major components:

  • Strategic development
  • Resource management
  • Information Technology Architecture

Information technology architecture is developed by strategic business/IT planning process and is a conceptual design of the management Information system. It shows different components and the relationship among those components of the MIS. That conceptual design is used for implementing, testing MIS systems. The information technology architecture includes the following major components:

  • Technology Platform
  • Data Resources
  • Applications architecture
  • IT Organization
Balanced Scorecard

Balanced Scorecard (BSC) is a method used to measure a company’s performance in terms of the vision and strategies of the company. BSC is a strategic management system that enables managers to capitalize on the important performance metrices necessary to drive success of the business. BSC system consists of four processes:

  • Translating the vision of the organization into operational goals of the organization
  • communicating the vision of organization and linking it to individual performance
  • business planning
  • feedback, comments and learning and adjusting strategies accordingly

The balanced Scorecard measures a business organization from different perspectives; some of them are:

  • Financial Perspective
  • Customer perspective
  • Business process perspective
  • Learning and growth perspective
Example of balanced Scorecard

Here a simple balanced scorecard of a company which manufactures and sales products in the market is provided. It has some goals to achieve, some targets are set.

Business PrioritiesMeasures20212022 (target)
Increase Sales QuantityNumber of products sold10000 units13000units
Minimize damaged ProductsNumber of products damaged500 Units100 units