The consultants report tells us that there are three types of management





Question 1

The consultants report tells us that there are three types of management. The report ideally encourages delegation and highlights the need for there to be specialization, with the ideal CIO being the third type who manages the organization’s major accounts. Barton’s hiring must therefore have been motivated by the realization that he was the one capable of handling management in the way recommended by the report. The report also tells us that Davies must not have effectively delegated his managerial duties to effectively utilize his highly skilled co-workers in charge of the various aspects of IT, which must have then taken more of his time resulting in him not dedicating enough time to manage the major portfolios

Question 2

It is difficult to put a quantitative value on the return on investment when it comes to IT because IT in most cases is used as a means to an end rather than an end in itself, unless the organization is an It firm. Further, establishing the cost of It in the kind of firm Barton works in is very difficult. This is because in such firms, each department has a budget of its own and makes procurements on its own as such the overall cost is bvery difficult to establish making quantifying investment very difficult. In addition It investments are dynamic, in the sense that they are made continuously and in different volumes, making gauging income that has been generated by each individual investment very difficult.

Question 3

The contention “IT Doesn’t Matter” is made by Nicholas Carr in The Harvard Business Review, who argues that IT essentially provides similar capabilities to all competitors. This is however not true, as it is the organization’s use of IT that determines how well the organization would be able to develop a competitive advantage over the others. A good example provided in the book by Maggie, is the example of Zara which uses IT to determine demand and therefore are able to fulfill new orders within about three weeks, ensuring they stay ahead of their competition. Another example also cited in the text is that of Wal-Mart, which through the development of the Bar coding system is able to get much more from IT that its competitor K-Mart.

Question 4

Based on the description of Mcfarlan’s Strategic Grid, my firm falls under the factory group as while we are operationally dependent on IT, we do not really utilize it in such a way that it gives us a competitive advantage.

Question 5

We can generalize percentages, as they help people to work within a specified budget and as such avoid accruing a huge expenditure bill on variable costs. A good example is that of Zara, which only utilizes 0.5 percent of its income on IT but is able to gain a massive competitive advantage, due to the fact that a strict budgetary allocation also encourages innovation. Further these allocations would also encourage accountability, such that departments are allocated percentages according to how well they utilize the percentages allocated. It would also ensure that the amount spent on maintenance is kept at a manageable level, with the amount spent on improving functionality benefitting as a result.