When we shop online, our order triggers a series of cascading events. It has an effect on both internal and external systems. We start with the order itself and then move to inventory management, which is then followed by sourcing, production, billing and partner systems for delivery - while not excluding CRM via web and mobile channels. The IT supply-chain to support this task is complex, especially today, when cloud services are available on nearly all devices.
A number of on premise and cloud-based services are employed on platforms such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Box, SAP, Salesforce, etc. Such systems interact with internal System of Record applications which ensure our orders are fulfilled timely and accurately. The first set of systems, constantly under pressure to respond to unpredictable growth, is agile, market-focused and innovative in outlook. The second set of internal systems (e.g. ERP, MES, CRM, HRM) that cloud-based platforms interact with is comprised of more traditional technologies that enterprises have steadily invested in over the years - focusing on stability, efficiency and predictability.
We have found ourselves at a crossroad of sorts, which demands that both systems work together, collaboratively and effectively. It is understood and accepted that this is no easy task - though it is one that IT must address in a timely manner to effectively support their business.
In other words, a new Operating Model is needed for IT in the New Age. The new model should be designed to adapt to an unpredictable future, while continuing to support enterprise with traditional services.
We have found ourselves at a crossroad of sorts, which demands that both systems work together, collaboratively and effectively
The New Model: Bringing it all together
For most IT organizations, there is pressure to manage IT as a business and not as a cost center. This has a ripple effect across multiple dimensions in an enterprise - extending from technology, processes and services to people and governance. As aggregators of services, the new operating model should touch every part of the enterprise, changing the very definition of a stakeholder. A careful enterprise-wide evaluation of needs, expectations and risks across stakeholders is critical to the adoption of a new operating model. The evaluation will help focus on the building blocks -- such as the need for dynamic sourcing of infrastructure, the IT market place, market demands, operating models, the demands of innovation, fulfilment fabric, a holistic view of the IT landscape, single bill for IT and governance that regulates infrastructure acquisition (See Figure 1: Building Blocks of a New & Effective Operating Model) -- that go into the creation of the new operating model.