Academic journal article International Journal of Business and Information

Impact of Business Value Planning and Social Factors on Business-IT Alignment in the Indian Context

Academic journal article International Journal of Business and Information

Impact of Business Value Planning and Social Factors on Business-IT Alignment in the Indian Context

Article excerpt

1. INTRODUCTION

Business-IT alignment is defined as the extent to which a company's IT strategy supports, and is supported by, the company 's business strategy.

Venkatraman et al. [1993] stated that, during the last two decades, information technology (IT) has become very critical in providing support, sustaining the competitive position, and enabling the growth of a business. The alignment of IT with business strategy, however, has been consistently ranked as the single most important issue facing business and IT executives, not only in North America but also in Europe.

Segars and Grover [1998] conducted empirical research to understand the impact of strategic information system planning (SISP) on SISP success. One of the constructs, "planning analysis," explains the need to understand the information needs of the organizational sub-units, identifying opportunities for internal improvements in the business process, and fulfilling them through appropriate IT initiatives. The fourth construct, "planning capabilities," explains the need to understand business strategy and its information needs and the ability to gain cooperation among user groups with regard to IS plans.

Kaur and Sengupta [2011] conducted research to understand the reasons for the failure of software. Their findings indicate that the majority of projects fail to meet their objectives because of poorly defined applications, miscommunication between business and IT, and poor collection, analysis, and management of requirements. These failures cost U.S. businesses about $30 billion every year.

2. METHOD

The purpose of the current research is to understand and quantify the impact of business value planning (BVP) and social factors [building human resources (BHR) and building partnerships (BP)] on business-IT alignment (BIA) and to examine and quantify the strength of interaction among the constructs.

Figure 1 is a flow chart depicting the method used to achieve the stated purpose. As indicated, the process began with a comprehensive literature review, followed by development of the research framework, objectives, and methodology. The next stage involved data collection and the analysis of results. The process concluded with a discussion of the results, the presentation of conclusions, and an overview of the implications and limitations of the study.

3. LITERATURE REVIEW

Reich and Benbasat [1996] tried to understand the linkages between business objectives and information technology objectives since these topics have consistently been reported as the key concerns of information systems managers. According to their research, the linkage construct has two dimensions. The first is the intellectual dimension, which is concerned with understanding the internal consistency and validity of the business and information technology plans. The authors collected data from 10 business units in three Canadian insurance organizations. They also collected and analyzed the artifacts of the business and IT plans to examine the consistency between them. The authors conducted extensive interviews with the target audience and then compiled all the data. Their analysis of the data revealed that understanding current objectives and having a shared vision for the use of IT are the most promising potential measures for short-and long-term aspects of the intellectual dimension.

Based on their research, Feeny and Wilcocks [1998] suggested a framework for planning the in-house IT function so as to keep pace with the changing needs of technology. Their framework has nine core capabilities. The authors discussed how the core capabilities can be used to handle the challenges in IT exploitation with regard to addressing business and IT vision, designing IT architecture, and delivering IT services. Some of the core capabilities, such as business systems thinking (equivalent to business value planning in the current research) and relationship building, are involved in integrating the IS/IT effort with business purpose and activity. …

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