Smartening Up Your IT Strategy

You were born. You grew up. You are in the C-suite. Whether you like it or not many of the business decisions you make are derived from data generated by an ERP system.

Ok, let’s talk.

Chances are you’ve got some brainpower and you’re in a position within an organization where the livelihood of not only yourself but hundreds or thousands of others depends on the decisions you make. Though you have capability and responsibility, you also understand the notion that all great leaders know that its smart strategy to be the dumbest person in the room.

That’s right, I said dumbest. You’ve got the IQ and EQ to know that you are only as good as your weakest link, and if that’s you . . . well-played! You are on top of your game!

But no matter how “dumb” one is, when any person in the C-suite thinks about strategy in today’s world, there is always a conversation about how technology and specifically ERP software fits into that strategy. Executives from the clients I’ve engaged with generally understand that ERP software is a central nervous system of information but aren’t quite sure how it’s all transmitted through the organism. Fortunately, there are typically many, many others in your organization who do understand ERP from a variety of different perspectives. The CIO understands it from a technical perspective; the CMO from a marketing perspective, the CFO from a financial perspective, and so on.

These C-suite team members are probably highly competent executives with capable teams. They appreciate the role ERP software can play and the benefits it can bring to their department and the company on a whole. But from what I’ve seen, delegating an implementation to just one of these resources results in an unmistakable case of tunnel-vision. Take CIOs, for instance, which far too many organizations lean on to run implementations. Though they certainly have technical skills, CIOs sometimes just don’t understand the business’ complexity, human capital requirements or the communication required to enforce alignment and adoption of the ERP system. Similarly, most marketing executives can whip up a plan to “sell” system usage but wouldn’t know a key system requirement from a hole in the ground.

This means that most C-level executives aren’t the dumbest person in the room in at least one or two competencies. But they’re smart enough to know they understand a piece of what’s needed – not the whole. That’s when they hire Panorama to help with an IT strategy, ensuring they are the dumbest person in the room again.

Whether your company is a small start-up or a Fortune 500, there comes a point where every C-suite executive must address the fact that ERP software is or will become a part of the organization’s core operating model in order for the organization to survive and ultimately thrive.  The executives who embrace the change and start with an IT strategy are the ones we see build successful, sustainable organizations.

Be sure to watch our webinar, Ten Things Every CIO Should Know About ERP Systems, to learn how implementation factors, like IT strategy, can contribute to the overall success of your organization.

Written by Jason Henritze-Hoye, Senior ERP Consultant at Panorama Consulting Solutions.

Written by The Consultants' Corner

The Consultants' Corner features blog entries direct from our ERP consultants. These blog entries provide real-world examples and advice related to ERP software selection projects, ERP implementations, business process reengineering and optimization, IT strategy initiatives and organizational change management.

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