The Endangered Species
According to Korn-Ferry, 98% of executives say innovation is important for top-line growth, yet over half are less than satisfied with the level of innovation in their companies.1
In his provocative 2003 article, “IT Doesn't Matter,” Nicholas Carr presents a compelling case for the diminishment of IT funding and the function itself. Through a series of examples that compare IT with popular and ubiquitous infrastructural technologies like water, telephone, and power utilities, Carr makes the argument that IT rarely generates sustainable competitive advantage. In fact, the very ubiquity of IT resources renders the function inadequate as a strategic asset, given that scarcity, not ubiquity, is what sets up a firm's opportunity to generate a sustainable competitive advantage. As an example, consider the proliferation of cloud-based alternatives mentioned in an earlier chapter and how these providers now offer a viable option to an otherwise expensive IT proposition. In essence, the democratization of IT resources and the leveling of the playing field it creates remove a significant barrier to entry for firms and thereby eliminate a source of competitive advantage for the privileged few once able to attain it.
To address the new environment of IT ubiquity and ...