Stories by Bruce A. Stewart

Taking control by letting go

I know of a central IT group that recently grew eightfold overnight. No, not through a merger -- it was the users turning their shadow IT groups over to IT because they don't need them anymore. All of this happened because this central IT organization got into the business of creating tools for users to satisfy reasonable IT needs on their own.

Moving Beyond Process Design

For a good decade now, most IT organizations have been strongly focused on business process design. With businesses investing big bucks in ERP, supply chain management and customer relationship management systems, process design has been king, and in many cases it has met real business needs. But more and more, with those implementations mostly behind us, process design will take a back seat to other skills.

Bring the excitement back

Four years ago, Nicholas Carr wrote his now-famous article "Does IT Matter?" in the Harvard Business Review. A firestorm of protest erupted in its wake, but business managers generally bought Carr's message: Application packages and infrastructure are commodities. Buy cheap, and ride the assets to death, because real innovation and competitive differentiation aren't found in IT once everyone's got the same stuff.