The theory of technology alignment has been around since the 1990s. It’s only in the last few years that it’s made its way into the regular lexicon of business. You are not alone if you’re familiar with the term but unsure exactly what it means or how to implement it. Let’s take an in-depth look into technology alignment to give you a better understanding of how crucial this process is to properly support your business.
Technology alignment is the process of ensuring that the technology of an organization is aligned with its business strategy. It involves making sure that the technology investments made by the company or organization are in line with its goals and priorities. This requires a comprehensive review of the organization’s technology systems, infrastructure, and processes. It will ensure they are optimized for the business needs of the company.
Simply put, technology alignment ensures that your business is using the right tech at the right time and using it in the right way. That means that you and your employees have the best, up-to-date software, hardware, and apps to reach your full working potential, and you’re using them at full capacity. This alignment starts with the basics, like making sure everyone uses collaborative documents and files correctly, and goes all the way through your complex industry-standard and financial software. All the moving parts have to work together to maximize productivity and cost-effectiveness.
Have you ever driven a car that needs an alignment? Sure, all the mechanics and other systems might be working correctly. But if the wheels aren’t aligned, you have to steer harder to aim in the right direction. And if you don’t get that alignment done, eventually, the tires will wear incorrectly. That’s just the beginning of a cascade of other issues. Technology alignment is the same. If you don’t perform the alignment, other systems will become harder to maintain and could even experience failure.
Not convinced yet? Some quick research shows us that:
If you’re in business these days, you’re likely paying for cloud-based apps and storage, and you should get your money’s worth! Yes, training your employees to use cloud computing properly is one part of the equation, but you also need to ensure that you’re using the best cloud systems and software as a service (SaaS) for your business as a whole. When everything is running smoothly, and everyone is on the same page, you’ll save a lot of time, money, and stress.
Also, you can boost your team’s productivity by upgrading your IT equipment. Trust us, struggling with outdated machines can be a total drag. And investing in the latest technology not only saves you money in the long run, but it can also be a game-changer for your business. That is technology alignment–making sure your team has the tools to do their jobs. Dated equipment that’s lacking proper resources is a surefire way to frustrate your crew. Your team will love the increased efficiency that comes with better computers and servers, and that motivation can lead to some seriously awesome work.
Of course, another key consideration in aligning your current technology is security. Your tech should meet your security needs and the standards of your industry. Patching and updates are critical for hardware and software. Not only that, when developers create, launch, and maintain cloud services, they put standards in place that protect your data and assets, create a positive user experience, and prevent downtime. When you’re not using the full potential of your cloud computing, you could inadvertently bypass or misuse the features that ensure security and the user experience that the developer intended. Alignment helps you make the most out of every facet of your technology.
Too often, we find ourselves in a love/hate relationship with technology because it evolves so quickly. Ever feel like as soon as you’ve truly learned how to make the most of an app or piece of software? Then it updates, and you have to learn all over again? Technology alignment can help with that sinking feeling. A complete technology alignment can highlight the strengths and gaps in your business’s tech and address things like planned upgrades and any training that needs to accompany those upgrades. Alignment also shows you where to boost gaps with additional SaaS or other software. With an increasing reliance on SaaS, it’s crucial to address any issues before they become unmanageable.
For this reason, a roadmap is absolutely necessary. A technology roadmap is a strategic plan that outlines the goals and objectives of an organization in terms of their technology infrastructure. It helps you identify what technologies you need to adopt, when you need to adopt them, and how to prioritize your investments in order to achieve the desired outcomes. A well-designed technology roadmap is crucial to ensuring that you stay competitive in today’s rapidly-evolving digital landscape. By providing a clear picture of your business’s technology needs and aspirations, your technology roadmap enables you to make informed decisions about your IT investments. Ultimately, a well-executed technology roadmap can help you to realize your vision for the future, by enabling you to leverage the power of technology to drive innovation and growth.
Aligning for the future is that much easier when you have a roadmap. If you know where you are, you can plan a roadmap for where you’re going. Remember, the future belongs to the business that can do things faster and more efficiently while maintaining high standards of quality. Technology alignment helps you be that business.
Now that you know what technology alignment is and why it’s so important, you might feel anxious about tackling the actual task. That’s okay! It’s a lot to take in. If you’ve not engaged in technology alignment before, you might not even know where to start. If you’ve got an in-house IT team, they can get the ball rolling. Co-managed or total managed services from an MSP are always a great option for extra support.
An MSP can also partner with you for virtual Chief Information Officer (vCIO) and Technology Alignment Manager (TAM) services. vCIOs and TAMs are highly trained. They are experienced IT professionals. They have the expertise to get your business’s technology aligned and keep it aligned, from hardware to software and every use case in between. A vCIO is also skilled with technology roadmaps to determine your business’s future IT needs.
Technology alignment is a terrific way to save resources and boost productivity and your bottom line. Whether you set your on-premises IT team to the task or partner with an MSP for co-managed or total managed services and/or a vCIO and TAM team, you won’t regret implementing an alignment now or in the future. Get in touch to learn more about technology alignment and how to get started! Experienced IT professionals can assist you with all your questions.