This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Why You Cannnot Rely On Vendors For Your IT Strategy

By Dan Woods

Stefan Dietrich is a Technology Strategy Consultant who has held senior positions at several large IT organizations and has consulted to startups and mid-market companies. Stefan recently joined as a contributor. This guest post is his inaugural story.

In an era of consumerized IT and packaged software solutions, increasingly delivered as a service from the cloud, it is tempting to think that vendors can be a good source for your IT strategy, relegating the CTO role to a sideshow. Resist this temptation.

To set technology and policy strategy, companies rely on their CIO/CTOs who in turn often employ dedicated "Technology Strategists". At some companies, these are valuable roles and work extremely well. At others, they don't, and when the cost pressure mounts, the growing impression becomes: technology strategy itself, just like engineering, is something that can be purchased as (or with) a product. This is false.

The role of technology strategy is not to select products from a menu of vendor options. The role of technology strategy is to examine the core business function that a company wants to pursue, and to determine how the path of the business will align with technology developments going forward and the business opportunities the company may take. The strategist must also consider which opportunities will fail, are uncertain, or as yet unknownâ¿¿in addition to considering the aspects of the business that work well with technology today, but may or may not thrive into the future.

Because virtually every business today is an IT business, technology strategy and business strategy are tightly bound, if not synonymous. The role of the technology strategist is therefore as essential as that of the head of the business division that is using the technology.

The vendor's natural inclination is to adopt their technology to your business as it is today, because the vendor is not championing your businessâ¿¿they are championing their own business. The vendor will never tell you to simplify your security policy, in fact, they love complex security rules and winding implementation projects. They might tell you your security rules don't fit with their product. But they will never tell you they've seen the writing on the wall of your industry's future, and it would be best if you threw out an investment in policy or technology that will become outmoded â¿¿ unless of course their offering is a direct replacement for that technology. Even then, the vendor will often make more money adapting their offering to an existing infrastructure than proposing a wholesale replacement, because of the long time scales and the amount of consulting involved. It's simply not in their interest to be "disruptive," because that could mean disrupting their sale or sullying their reputation.

1 of 3

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $94.26 -0.77%
FB $101.50 2.00%
GOOG $684.03 0.87%
TSLA $163.06 10.00%
YHOO $27.10 1.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 15,914.74 -99.64 -0.62%
S&P 500 1,851.86 -0.35 -0.02%
NASDAQ 4,283.5920 +14.8290 0.35%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs