IT: Your Friendly Neighborhood Strategic Business Partner

Posted on December 18, 2013. Filed under: Career Management, Executive Job Search, Job Market Trends, Job Search Tips, Personal Branding | Tags: , |

strategic business partnerWe’ve been witnessing a major transition in the role of IT in most organizations from service provider (or resident “firefighter”) to strategic business partner for some time now. Or at least we have been witnessing a lot of “talk” about this transition.

The reality in many organizations, particularly smaller shops, might be more that IT is now strategic business partner AND service provider, which means that tech job candidates need to showcase both skill sets. (Here at ITtechExec, we have been encouraging our IT clients to understand that they aren’t just there to solve computing problems; they need to combine their tech knowledge with business vision.)

Nevertheless, the general consensus is that in 2014, IT as your “friendly” neighborhood strategic business partner will manifest itself through the use of all kinds of new and “hip” titles (let’s face it, the easiest way to look like you are making a transition is to change a job title!).

Here are some we have come across and that will ramp up throughout the new year:

  1. Business Intelligence Analyst: Now, this title isn’t exactly new, but it is generally new to the IT arena now that big data is driving focus on business intelligence.
  2. Director of IT Infrastructure: The idea behind this title is strategic visioning, advising CIOs (or whatever title they will be going by soon) on such things as the best networking and cloud-based technologies for your organization.
  3. Chief Knowledge Officer: Although there seems to be a lack of agreement on exactly what this role entails, generally speaking, it is a subject matter expert in the company’s industry that also has expertise in technology [you know, a little knowledge can sometimes be a dangerous thing :-)].
  4. Technology Solutions Engineer: This title is the very essence of the transition in IT for this role is meant to look at all kinds of business problems and produce various options, using technology, to solve them.

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6 Responses to “IT: Your Friendly Neighborhood Strategic Business Partner”

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Thankfully business schools are starting to realize this as well, and are beginning to teach for it. I recently completed my MBA in Management with a focus on IT Management and the topic of business innovation and leadership was heavily emphasized. I think another driving force in this is that IT departments have become more agile, better at keeping the ‘lights on’ and can now dedicate more time to understanding the business and driving business goals through technology. It is time to step away from the ‘how’ of just making it work, time to move to the ‘why we need it’ and the ‘what can it do for the business’ questions…

Well said, Ken! It’s good to hear that programs are adapting to industry’s needs. Congrats on the MBA!

[…] in the middle]. IT as a service provider is out (at least “in theory”), and IT as a strategic business partner is in (at least “in […]

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