The primary goal of this study is to discuss the challenges of speedy information technology changes. The paper will also discuss that what are the difficulties is the business world facing due to persistent changes in the information technology.
After the introduction of digital computers during the period of 1950s, the world has witnessed a speedy development in the capabilities of computer technology. In this regard, this evolution has crucial implications for one has access to computer technology; several questions aroused at that time that which types of information can be dealt in automated applications; and which types of managerial functions or processes can be backed by computer applications. However, the evolution of IS pertinent to issues of electronic data management and preservation since the evolving capabilities and uses of IS have an affect on the aim, comprehensiveness, dependability, authenticity, and value of the electronic data.
The evolution of IT falls into three major phases: the mainframe era, the era of the personal computer (PC), and the networking era. Each era succeeded innovation in IT and made new applications for IT without inevitably displacing older systems.
Speedy changes in the information technology forcing organizations to review what it takes to sustain the competitive advantage. In reality, speedy changes in the information technology sector provide tremendous challenges and opportunities for the global business world.
“Information technology is only the means to achieve the goal. Organizations, whether they are the Army or a small independently owned manufacturer, must first determine several things. What are the goals of the company? For an owner these include both personal and business goals. From this comes a strategy for survival, growth, or leaving a market. In recent years, information technology has skyrocketed in capability and plummeted in cost. New IT products emerge and current ones change rapidly. As a result of these changes, the challenges of managing IT today are becoming increasingly complex”. (James, 2001)
But still a little is experienced about the information technology management troubles that arise from rapid changes in the information technology. Nevertheless, mixed with a collective culture more aware and assuming of IT, such modification has propelled IT to play into a more and more strategic role in more business organizations. In many organizations, this has increased the significance of managing the information technology. Certainly, realizing the challenges of managing quickly, changes in the information technology will increase the understanding of future challenges.
According to James “the year 2006 will be remembered as the year of the “consumer effect” on business technology. Solutions created for search and entertainment are now being used in business to create compelling, easy to use applications that resonate with internal users and consumers alike. Mobility, once the bastion of only a relatively small percentage of business travelers, has become standard with wireless hot spots from coffee houses to airports to hotels around the globe. The concept of a truly mobile work force, working anywhere, connected everywhere went from being a vision to reality in 2006”. (James, 2001)
One of the effects on the consumer effect is a sudden increase in information technology purchasing as organizations plan for what many are denoting to as Web 2.0, the next phase of the digital economy. Not surprisingly, many years have gone since the information technology became an active part in almost all business operations, since then, the business management is being driven by cost cutting and enhance ratio, consolidation and most importantly small and medium, even all sizes of business organizations are turning towards IT in quest of generating revenue and find new markets for their products and services.
Due to day to changes in IT, several multinational companies changed their information technology focus from simple transactions to more complex interactions with their clients and users. Many business organizations continue to cut down their dependence on bequest systems and are moving towards more flexible and principles based architectures.
As a result of every day changes in IT businesses continue to centralize certain important systems and applications. According go James business organizations may cope these persistent changes if organizations seriously consider the fact that “IT pros and business unit management will collaborate on IT projects to best serve the business. This shift is creating more business savvy information technology companies and also more technically knowledgeable lines of business management. Despite of persistent changes we are seeing a gain in IT jobs, with over 129,000 new IT Management jobs added in the last several years”. (James, 2001)
“Industry observers have suggested that this swiftly changing IT is causing difficulties for today’s IT management. Traditional IT structures cannot cope with continual change and the rapid introduction and utilization of information technologies. New IT must be absorbed, mastered, and controlled. This demands the ability to apply new ideas and practices that in turn require abstract thinking, problem solving, and inference. As a result, new IT is difficult to manage”. (John, 2000)
Therefore, realizing the everyday changes in information technology while avoiding related risks in business, can pose a complex challenge to information technology in business management. Changes in IT creating the following difficulties for the business world in different phases:
- Some present changes in information technology has made it very difficult to handle huge amount of capital that is administered as technology, instead of being managed as capital because of the crucial factor that huge amount of mixture capital demands human capabilities that no individual can hope to own.
- Complexity of information system has made it very difficult to maintain and manage capital data.
- Many corporate databases maintain most part of the information that is irrelevant to managing the actual business operations, thus, making information complexity and management difficulties.
- The IT architecture, equipment, and networks in this regard are handled individually from other collective infrastructure and are in general unwieldy.
- IT is separate from the other operations of corporate business, consequently, creating alignment difficulties.
- IT is administered instead of dealt as capital to furnish the best solutions needed to produce other endeavor results
- In business framework there is no specific pattern for managing IT, hence, making it complicated to plan and manage the specific results to be produced.
Nowadays, regular changes in the field of information technology have made it very difficult for information technology manager to manage the capacity and environment of information technology. “But most businesses aren’t there yet. In fact, 80 percent of business information today, is typically in unstructured formats like e-mail, graphics, audio and video, buried deep inside the organization where it cannot be managed. To meet compliance needs, all this buried treasure needs to be scanned and digitized, stored securely and be readily available for internal and external tracking, which even includes producing original documents”. (Information technology challenges keep rising, n.d.)
On the other hand, changes in IT have made it possible for many organizations to enhance their business performance as they meet tighter compliance requirements. Nowadays database management policies and systems assisting organizations to comply with complex regulation, also as spur productivity, increase client services and hike up return on technology investment.
“Latest advances of information technology can facilitate the processes such as channeling, gathering, or dissemination of information, however, the final burden is on the humans to translate this information into actionable knowledge depending on an acute understanding of their business context. Having the best-of-breed technologies doesn’t necessarily ensure creativity and innovation that is necessary for organizational competence. Effective utilization of technology is necessary — synchronized with effective utilization of the creative and innovative capacity of the human components”. (Current Business Concerns and Knowledge Management, n.d.)
For businesses who conceive that IT is an end in itself, there will be no sudden change they will continue to revealed new challenges. However, investment in information technology will just be another dense business decision. In this regard, many business organizations are going to see empowerment for their staff at all levels in business in order to permit operational and tactical managers to cut out the continual need for regressive meeting. In this respect, organizations will need to have the constant ability to react quicker, think faster, and respond to change, in shorter words proactive rather than reactive. As a matter of fact, this will only come with the persistent training and development of the staff employed in an organization.
There are numerous changes in Information Technology (IT) and its operating environment that emphasize the need to better manage IT-related risks. Dependence on electronic information and IT systems is essential to support critical business processes. In addition, the regulatory environment is mandating stricter control over information. Increasing disclosures of information system disasters and increasing electronic fraud drives this, in turn. Regular changes in information technology and associated risks with it are now being understood as a key function in many business organizations. (Current Business Concerns and Knowledge Management, n.d)
“Over the last few decades, the world has been changing so rapidly that one can no longer imagine managing in a steady state. The need to adapt and change continuously has become a given in managerial life. In no other domain has this observation been more relevant than the field of information technology” Such IT change is replete with “startling innovations and drastic, unpredictable shifts in technology’s direction” The change is not only rapid, but also is expected to continue into the future; In fact, the pace of change is accelerating”. (John, 2000)
Finally, the present scenario demands that the business world should rethink and realize carefully it that what is the nature of the greater information that technology is bringing to us. Unfortunately in some cases, it may actually be irrelevant, in other cases it will permit better tactical or operational decisions to be made, but without putting much effect on the strategy.
Current Business Concerns and Knowledge Management
http://www.brint.com/interview/times.htm Accessed, July 8, 2007
Information technology challenges keep rising – Portland Business Journal:
http://www.bizjournals.com/portland/stories/2004/02/23/focus8.html Accessed, July 8, 2007
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