Saturday, February 21, 2009

The importance of IS Strategy Triangle and its relationship

1. The Information Systems Strategy Triangle is a simple framework for understanding the impact of IS on organizations. From the Information System Strategy Triangle, we can see that the IS strategy triangle consists of Business Strategy, Organizational Strategy and Information Strategy. A Business Strategy is a well-articulated vision of where the business seeks to go and how it expects to get there. It is the form by which a business communicates its goals. Organizational strategy is concerned with envisioning a future for your family business, creating value in the eyes of your customers, and building and sustaining a strong position in the marketplace. Information Strategy means the hardware, software, application, database, procedure, people, network.

As we know, the Successfully firms’ business strategy drives both their organizational and IS strategies. It means that they must seek to balance business, organizational, and IS strategies. IS Strategy is affected by the other strategies a firm uses. Organizational and Information Strategy are then dependent upon the Business Strategy. Changes in any strategy requires changes in the others to maintain balance (rubber band!). Business, IS and organizational strategies must be constantly adjusted. IS strategy always involves consequences on business and organizational strategy [1].

Since the business strategy drives both Organizational and Information strategy, it keep a key role in the IS Strategy Triangle. If the business strategy doesn’t drive the other strategies, the triangle will become unbalance. That is, the balance among the three strategy would be broken, and it may lead to the failure of an organization. And the organizations are hard to be successful in businesses without the balance in IS Strategy Triangle.

2. If a traditional manufacturing company that wanted to take advantage of the Internet and the Web, the business model of the company has changed from the traditional to E-commerce manufacture. Electronic markets allow cooperating competing companies to control how a market in a certain business area operates. This can have strategic implications due to way this manipulates the environmental threat and opportunities. Internet commerce has the potential to replace traditional sales channels in both the business-to consumer and business-to-business sectors. In addition e-commerce can generate new business opportunities, for instance the sale of electronic content has provided a new channel for the distribution of music, and it may be argued, provided a different product. Overall, the business model has changed, so the operation of the organization also would be changed.

As a business strategy is developed it should be used to inform the strategies of the departments that make up the organization, in this way the Organizational and IS strategy of a company would be influenced by the business strategy. When a company wants to change its business model from traditional to E-commerce, the Organizational and IS strategy will also change following the Business Strategy so that the IS Strategy Triangle can keep balance. Adoption of e-commerce strategies implies that new technologies must be mastered and new ways of working will be encountered. An organization must analyze the requirements and ensure that it can meet them so that the organization can have a high success in its business.

3. The Chief Information Officer (CIO), whose position is providing strategic direction, planning, oversight, delivery and accountability for information technology (IT) activities. This position requires an individual to roll up their sleeves and contribute while leading the IT function within the organization. Key areas of responsibility include planning, organizing, staffing, directing and controlling company information technology functions. The Chief Information Officer will serve as the primary point of contact, Kiewit's technology head, and report to the Senior Vice President of Operations and Administration. The incumbent will work with technology to provide a strategy for driving the company's Business Plan and effectively communicate the strategy throughout the organization [2].

Since the Respondents said they needed to be more involved in vision setting, organizational strategy and communication, in addition to the advice they provide to the business on technology, the CIOs considered application development and integration as potential areas for cost reductions, while intelligence and analytics were not considered as important. And they also believe that application development and integration are still significant areas of focus for achieving cost reductions and securing overall value. However, Knowledge, intelligence and analytics, on the other hand, are not considered priorities. According these, the CIOs of Fast Company suggested the business strategy and organizational strategy and declare that the job of the CIO is to provide organizational and strategic flexibility.


1. M.A. Dorenbos, The Information Systems Strategy Triangle, Available at: ( Access on February 20, 2009)
2. Omaha N.E (January 23, 2009), [Posted 2009/01/23 ]EXECUTIVE CONSTRUCTION JOBS, Chief Information Officer (CIO), Available at: (Access on February 20, 2009).


irene_shen said...

1. Why is it important for business strategy to drive organisational strategy and IS strategy?

What might happen if business strategy was not the driver?

Simply put, organizational strategy is a clear definition of how the organization needsto change – over time - in order to be able to deliver the strategy of the enterpriseand an actionable plan of how to make the transformation. This requires both thethinking and analysis to compare current state to desired state and define the gap,and the execution capabilities to make the requisite changes happen.Developed and implemented effectively organizational strategy enablescompanies to convert strategic intent into sustainable and high performanceresults.
Therole of information systems in providing competitive advantage and the frequent need for business re-engineering that accompanies adoption of new technology are discussed. Strategic IT planning and the evaluation process toensure proper alignment of technology to business goals are also explained. Global IT issues are also considered.
so it is important for business strategy to drive organisational strategy and IS strategy.
Business Strategy - is concerned more with how a business competes successfully in a particular market. It concerns strategic decisions about choice of products, meeting needs of customers, gaining advantage over competitors, exploiting or creating new opportunities strategy models should not: just be statements of intent; come across like a political speech; have concrete meaning only to management; concern themselves with events far in the future or have little relevance to today.
so if business strategy was not the driver, it might make the business fail.

2. Consider a traditional manufacturing company that wanted to take advantage of the Internet and the Web. What might be a reasonable business strategy and how would organisational and IS strategy need to change?
When a traditional manufacturing company wants to take advantage of the Internet and the Web, its business model changed from traditional business to e-commerce business. in order to make the business sucessfully,E-commerce provides many new ways for businesses and consumers to communicate and conduct business.The information strategy also would has a big change. Online implementation need the hardware to support and proper software to make the online process work. It also need a wide network so others can view the information abt this organization. The database would be some different than before, because it is through internet, the record was automatically done by the proper procedure.

3. What does this tip from Fast Company mean: “The job of the CIO is to provide organisational and strategic flexibility”?
Office of the CIO in support of the campuswide IT process:
· Communications
· Financial Planning
· Project Management
· Security, Privacy and Policy s. Assistance Strategic Technology Acquisition
Some of these services correspond to departments in the Office of the CIO, but they are presented here as services to the campus IT community instead of as organizational unit
[1]organizational strategy , from World Wide Web:
[2]information systems strategy,from World Wide Web:
[3]business strategy,from World Wide Web:
[4]CIO,from world wide web:

Ms-Sha said...

My review on Irene Shen's answers:

1. Your answer in this part as a whole is quite clear. Good.

2. Good answer. Finally I see one response that actually answers the question. Good! Your answer makes sense.

3. Your answer shows the diverse aspects of CIO's roles, even though not much elaboration. Good job.

Ms-Sha said...

My review on Lili's answers:

1. Quite a broad approach in answering, starting from the details of each strategy. Good.

2. Good thinking of using the word 'e-commerce' in here to introduce the description of the new business strategy.

3. For your info, the CIO's roles are not as much as an information manager, as how you've listed. Why did you mention "Kiewit's technology head"? Please make sure you 'copy' your text wisely during citation. The last paragraph of the answer sounds more correct that the previous ones.