In a recent conversation, a senior IT manager of one of the world's largest logistics and shipping companies stated that it now sees itself as a technology company. Their competency in harnessing technology is key to their success. Failure to manage this technology would mean that their business would fail.
IT is now at the core of many businesses, whether it is managed in-house or it is outsourced. The processes are automated or computerized, and realized as services, such as an electronic banking service, an online book store service, a customer relationship management service, or a supply chain management service. Many businesses rely completely on IT services to interact directly with their customers, as either their primary channel to market or another fundamental enabler for delivering their value to customers. To be successful, a business must be able to manage and predict the value it delivers through technology and the cost of delivering that value. It must be able to harness technology to bring new services to market to stay ahead of the competition, or just to keep up with its competitors. When IT is at the core of the delivery of its value as a business, then it must be accountable, manageable, and flexible.