IT Strategy & Architecture
Digitization and automation of virtually every business process has moved the IT from a support function to a critical success factor for competitiveness, survival and higher profits. The digital transformation is affecting even the most conservative industries today.
But due to It’s history as a niche supporting business function, current IT systems often do not align with business needs and cannot be scaled or extended to meet them. This discrepancy between business needs and IT capabilities hinder growth, strategy changes, acquisitions and thus lead to a worse competitive position.
IT strategy for the future
To minimize the difference between business needs and IT capabilities an IT strategy has to be created. We at much. Consulting is the interface between business and technology. This position enables us to build extensive IT strategies for high growth startups, established medium sized companies and corporates.
1. Aligning business and IT
First, the company’s strategy and goals are analyzed and the demand for IT systems in the future is defined. The focus lies in creating maximum business value aligned with the strategy.
2. Defining the current state
Every company has existing systems, processes and service providers in place. We identify who these systems are operated by and how they support business. Additionally, their interworking is analyzed to get a full picture and understanding of the IT architecture.
Then the technology stack, age, state, cost, responsibilities and support level of each system is collected to find the most crucial systems with the biggest gap to the business need early in the process.
Here we analyze your application landscape, IT & cloud infrastructure, provided IT services and support and the organizational structure.
In the end, a full overview of the current IT landscape is delivered
3. Defining the vision
Based on business needs and already existing capabilities, the vision is defined. This includes future systems, consolidation of the technology stack, inhouse or external service delivery with a focus on high cost/benefit ratio. Strategy considerations for the most important systems are taken into account by rating the importance of each system to the business .
This enables you to see what costs come from the strategic value (e.g. more expensive inhouse support for core systems) and what savings are possible by provisioning non core systems externally. For long term success IT management best practices are introduced.
The result of this analysis is not only individual systems but a completely revised IT architecture that builds on your current strengths and extends your capabilities for maximum business value.
4. Planning the road ahead
A strategy is only as good as the execution. To bring your gained strategic knowledge to its fullest potential, a detailed roadmap is created. This does not only include a list of all needed changes but also takes dependencies into consideration. In the end, you know what has to be done, how much it costs and who does what when.
We provide all services needed to run a efficient and
robust business IT infrastructure
What problems can you solve with an IT strategy?
IT systems have three critical factors: time, costs & capabilities.
If your IT systems cannot change fast enough to keep pace with your organization, a new strategy can show which systems hinder development.
Also, it identifies old technology stacks and sometimes even ancient technologies that slow development in all related systems. Even though some of your business IT is state of the art, a single outdated system can obstruct the advantages of new systems. Especially with the move toward web-based technology stacks, old systems with a lack of interfaces hinder your entire IT.
On the cost side, there are many reasons why IT systems can either be or seem too expensive. By analyzing the gap between state and vision, sharp cost decreases can become obvious.
This gap can be due to many reasons – to name a few:
- The hammer: If you have a hammer, everything is a nail: In a business context, technologies that have been around for a long time are often used for tasks they were not designed to do. This can lead to significant cost and time overruns.
- The overkill: Today, many business needs can be fulfilled with cheap, standardized SaaS or open-source software. Maintenance, license and operations cost of complex systems built for significantly more complex use cases drive cost. Common examples are full SAP implementations for simple order-to-cash processes, Salesforce used for one simple pipeline or maintaining a data warehouse for small datasets.
- The (old) cruise liner: Similar to the hammer, the cruise liner is also an often old system or technology stack. But instead of being used for the wrong problem, it was used for every right problem. This leads to massive systems that were strongly customized and are expensive to maintain and extend.
Projects that finish in time and in budget often lack some crucial business requirements, particularly if the requirements have changed over time. With an IT strategy, you discover which system is fulfilling which business requirements, which additional capabilities are needed, and where to add the best.