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Adopters

Guiding the Digital Transformation of Organizations
Vallabh Sambamurthy / Robert W. Zmud

Sheetal Agarwal, University of Washington
Manju Ahuja, University of Louisville
Joshi Anant, FHR School of Business
Curtis Armstrong, Tennessee Tech University
Cristina Bahm, LaRoche College
Subhajyoti (Shubho) Bandyopadhyay, University of Florida
Ravi Bapna, Indian School of Business
Jon Beard, George Mason University
France Bélanger, Virginia Tech
Roberta Bernardi, Royal Holloway
Gerhard Blendstrup, San Francisco State
Gee-Woo Bock, Sungkyunkwan University
Traci Carte, University of Oklahoma
Kathy Chudoba, Utah State University
H. Michael Chung, California State University, Long Beach
Ed Curry, National University of Ireland, Galway
Viet Dao, Shippensburg University
Candice Deans, George Mason University
Sanjeev Dewan, University of California, Irvine
Michael Donohoe, University of Pittsburgh
Brian Dunn, University of Oklahoma
Kelly Fadel, Utah State University
Kirsten Foot, University of Washington
Lesley Gardner, University of Auckland
Tony Gerth, Indiana University
Sandeep Goyal , University of Louisville
Jian Guan, University of Louisville
Tor Guimaraes, Tennessee Tech University
Khaled Hassanein, McMaster University
Bill Hefley, University of Texas at Dallas
Rui Huang, University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth
Abdou Illia, Eastern Illinois University
Vikas Jain, University of Tampa
Matthew Jensen, University of Oklahoma
Jeffrey Johnson, Utah State University
Eun Ju Jung, George Mason University
Weiling Ke, Clarkson University
Bill Kettinger, University of Memphis
Jiban Khuntia, University of Colorado – Denver
Rajiv Kishore, University at Buffalo, SUNY
Landon Kleis, Simon Fraser University
Erik Krogh, Pepperdine University
Daniel Lee, University of Massachusetts
Paul Leong, Auckland University of Technology
JoAnne Lim, SKEMA Business School
Likoebe Maruping, University of Louisville
Nirup Menon, George Mason University
Saby Mitra, Georgia Institute of Technology
Lapo Mola, SKEMA Business School
Valter Moreno, Rio de Janeiro State University
Tridas Mukhopadhyay, Carnegie Mellon University
Harichand Nair, University of Memphis
Ning Nan, University of British Columbia
Sridhar Narasimhan , Georgia Institute of Technology
P. Pankaj, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Ann Pavone, University of Pittsburgh
Ferdinando Pennarola, Bocconi University
Brian Pentland, Michigan State University
Jennifer Pitts, Columbus State University
Clay Posey, University of Alabama
Darin Purintun, University of Oklahoma
Narayan Ramasubbu, University of Pittsburgh
Jui Ramprasad, Indian School of Business
Cindy Riemenschneider, Baylor
Anthony Rodi, University of Pittsburgh
Vallabh Sambamurthy, Michigan State University
Otavio Sanchez, Fundação Getúlio Vargas
Nilesh Saraf, Simon Fraser University
Harminder Singh, Auckland University of Technology
Heshan Sun, University of Oklahoma
Sabrina Tatta, University of Washington
Jason Thatcher, Clemson University
Tina Wang, Eastern Illinois University
Mary Beth Watson-Manheim, University of Illinois at Chicago
Sunil Wattal, Temple University
Matt Wimble, University of Michigan-Dearborn
Mingdi Xin, University of California, Irvine
Mahmoud Youssef, George Mason University
Suzanne Zyngier, La Trobe University

Comments Off on Bill Kettinger, Professor, University of Memphis

Thanks to you and Samba for preparing such high quality teaching materials that focus at just the right level for professional master students.

Comments Off on Sabyasachi Mitra, Professor, Georgia Tech

In the core MBA class on managing IT, I rely extensively on cases and contemporary examples from the popular press. While that stimulates interest, students find it difficult to abstract the fundamental concepts from the cases and examples. The most attractive features of this book are the many conceptual frameworks that the authors use to convey the key IT management concepts. The authors also draw on their extensive knowledge of the academic research in information systems to augment the frameworks they present. The text can supplement the cases and examples I use in the course to provide a much better learning experience for the students. While the book is written for the MBA audience, I believe it can be effectively used in executive education programs as well.

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PURCHASE ENTIRE DIGITAL BOOK (PDF format) – $35.00

 

Guiding the Digital Transformation of Organizations

Guiding the Digital Transformation of Organizations

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This text provides an overview of how organizations use information technology (IT) to improve performance and discusses the actions taken by technologists, managers and business professionals to assure that IT investments and IT-enabled business initiatives prove to be both appropriate and value-adding.

Read the Foreword for a more in-depth explanation of the authors’ objectives.

 




PURCHASE INDIVIDUAL DIGITAL CHAPTERS (PDF format) – $3.50 each

 

Enhancing Competitiveness Through IT

Enhancing Competitiveness Through Information Technology

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This material should improve your ability to recognize the strategic opportunities for leveraging IT by illustrating the fundamental ways that IT can be applied to enhance an organization’s competitiveness. We link the opportunities to an organization’s primary strategic orientations and describe how IT-related business initiatives can enhance an organization’s competitiveness. This chapter covers the following topics:

  • The Competitive Use of IT
  • The Chameleon-like Nature of IT
  • Business Strategy and IT Strategy
  • Business Models and Value Disciplines
  • The Strategic Roles of IT
  • Business Model Innovation
  • Sustainability of IT-enabled Competitive Actions

 


Competing in Digital Markets

Competing in Digital Markets

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This chapter extends and complements the chapter on using IT for competitive purposes for two major reasons. First, IT directly enables business models in these markets to a far greater extent than is seen with traditional markets. Second, the competitive dynamics of these markets plays out quite differently from that observed with traditional markets. The following topics are covered:

  • The Nature of Digital Products and Services
  • The Nature of Digital Markets
  • Clarifying the Distinction between One-sided and Two-sided Markets
  • The Competitive Dynamics of Digital Markets

 




Business Platforms

Business Platforms

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Today, an ever-increasing portion of value chain activities are either enabled through or supported by IT. Such IT-enabled or IT-supported processes and procedures are perhaps best thought of as engineered business platforms that not only provide employees with access to digitized data and tools in carrying out their work assignments, but also increasingly become the primary means by which work activities are handled. Business platforms, thus, represent the IT-enabled processes and procedures fundamental to an organization being able to successfully execute its business models. This chapter describes how organizations today are rethinking and redesigning such business platforms. The topics covered are:

  • Transforming Business Platforms
  • Designing Business Platforms
  • Global Business Platforms
  • Business Platform Standardization and Integration

 


IT Infrastructure

IT Infrastructure

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Much of any organization’s IT investments are not directed at specific IT-enabled business solutions, but instead are directed at providing foundational IT capabilities. Collectively, these foundational technical systems and information systems are referred to as IT infrastructure. IT infrastructure represents about half of most organizations’ investments in IT at any point in time, and the cost of implementing a new IT-enabled business solution may very well require that enhancements or extensions be made to the existing IT infrastructure. This chapter examines the nature of today’s IT infrastructures. The topics covered include:

  • IT Infrastructure Components
  • IT Infrastructure Evolution
  • Challenges with Technology Standardization and Process Optimization
  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems
  • Alternatives to Implementing an ERP System
  • Managing IT Infrastructures

 


IT Investment Value Pathways

IT Investment Value Pathways

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Regardless of an organization’s IT innovation posture (i.e., being an early or late adopter of new IT products and services), it is imperative today that anyone proposing an IT investment be keenly aware of how the investment would contribute to that organization’s performance. This chapter presents concepts and techniques that examine and explain how IT investments contribute to business value. More specifically, the following topics are covered:

  • Resolving the IT Productivity Paradox
  • Organization Performance Targets
  • IT Investment Value Pathways
  • Constructing a Capability Map

 




Building Business Cases for IT Investment Proposals

Building Business Cases for IT Investment Proposals

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Ideas for new projects are argued and justified by developing a business case that strives to make clear the business value of the idea. Convincing business cases for IT investments achieve their aims in two ways. First, they are expressed in the language of business, not in technical terms. Proponents usually are most successful when their arguments are targeted at business process improvements, business capability enhancements, and organization performance gains. Second, in building and selling a convincing business case, proponents must engage stakeholders from across the organization early and often. This chapter covers the following variety of topics that collectively provide tactics, techniques and insights into how to build convincing business cases for IT investment proposals:

  • The Innovation Cycle
  • Financial and Strategic Business Cases
  • Building Financial Business Cases for Proposed IT Investments
  • A Financial Business Case Example
  • Intel’s Value Dials Methodology

 


The Digitized Enterprise

The Digitized Enterprise

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This chapter begins by describing the digitized value streams and digitized work flows within which organizations operate today, and then examines three domains of enterprise digitization. The operational domain focuses on efficiently and effectively initiating and/or handling transactions being executed through business processes. The analytical domain focuses on creating, accumulating and making sense of the organization’s data, some of which is associated with the operational business processes and others of which have been acquired or created. The collaboration domain focuses on enabling those individuals involved with business and decision processes to effectively work together regardless of their spatial proximity. Specific topics covered include:

  • Digitizing Industry Value Streams
  • Digitizing Work Flows Within and Across Organizations
  • The Operational Digital Domain
  • The Analytical Digital Domain
  • The Collaborative Digital Domain

 


The Extended Digitized Enterprise

The Extended Digitized Enterprise

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The objective sought in externalizing work activities is to have others take over, or supplement in some way, internally-performed tasks such that these tasks are accomplished quicker, more effectively and more efficiently. By making measured decisions about which work activities to externalize and how to govern the externalized work activities, significant improvements in organization performance can occur. This chapter is intended to provide you with an understanding of some of the ways in which externalizing work can improve an organization’s performance, the key issues that need to be considered when externalizing work, and tactics for governing externalized work. Specific topics covered include:

  • Unbundling the Organization
  • Outsourcing Work Activities
  • Outsourcing IT Work Activities
  • Shifting Organizational Boundaries
  • Digitally-Enabled Value Networks
  • Engaging Others through Social Media

 


Implementation and Change Management

Implementation and Change Management

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The objective of this chapter is two-fold: to explain why disappointment and frustration can arise when implementing IT-enabled business solutions, and to suggest how IT implementation efforts can be better managed so that anticipated benefits are more fully realized. The chapter covers the following topics:

  • Today’s IT-enabled Business Solutions
  • The IT Implementation Process
  • Technology Adoption and Use Behaviors
  • Managing IT-induced Organization Change

 




Project Management

Project Management

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An important set of skills for any manager, business professional or IT professional to develop are those associated with planning for and executing project-based work. Since many crucial business initiatives are carried out by project teams, organizations lacking strong project management capabilities are likely to experience less consistent competitive success than competitors holding such capabilities. More specific to this text’s focus on IT, organizations with limited project management capabilities tend to experience much greater difficulties implementing IT-enabled business solutions. This chapter describes what project management is all about and introduces a number of useful project management practices. Topics covered include:

  • What is a Project?
  • What is Unique about IT Projects?
  • Project Success and Failure
  • Project Management Practices
  • Project Scoping with Coors’ Point of Sales (POS) Application Suite

 


IT Risk Management

IT Risk Management

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IT risks need to be managed as both business issues and technical issues. Risk-related policies and programs need to be: aligned with an organization’s objectives, strategies and culture; designed to meet business-determined levels of risk; and adapted to the particular needs of individual operating units. IT risk management is a participation sport demanding the active involvement of all of its IT managers and IT professionals and all of its business managers and business professionals. In order to prepare you to take an active role in participating in your organization’s exposure to IT risks, as well as managing your personal exposure to IT risk, this chapter covers the following topics:

  • The Nature of IT Risk
  • Enterprise IT Risks
  • IT Initiative IT Risks
  • Risk Exposure from Outsourcing
  • Effective IT Risk Management
  • Tactics for Preventing and Controlling Enterprise IT Risks
  • Tactics for Preventing and Controlling IT Initiative Risks
  • Educating for IT Risk Management
  • Assessing the Operational Risk Exposure of Coors’ POS Application Suite

 


IT Governance

IT Governance

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In order that IT-related investments contribute to both local and enterprise-wide objectives and to both short-term and long-term performance outcomes, effective executive leadership teams design and put in place an appropriate IT governance system, an appropriate design for their organization’s IT function, and, for public firms, an appropriate IT governance role for the Board of Directors. An effective system of IT governance provides structures and processes that ensure the right people apply the right criteria in making IT decisions. An effective design for the IT function locates IT capabilities and IT activities so that they optimally contribute to organizational performance objectives. An effective IT governance role for a Board of Directors involves focusing the corporate oversight provided by these directors on critical IT-related issues. This chapter covers:

  • IT Governance Objectives
  • IT Governance Decision Rights
  • IT Governance Posture
  • IT Governance Processes and Structures
  • IT Governance in Practice: The IT Engagement Model
  • Organizing the IT Function
  • The Role of the Board of Directors in IT Governance

 


Basic Concepts

Appendix: Basic Concepts

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This chapter provides essential definitions and descriptions for a number of concepts that are important for understanding the text chapters, as well as for readings and cases used in conjunction with the text. Obtaining a sound grasp of these concepts should enable a reader, regardless of his or her educational or work background, to participate effectively in discussions and problem assignments regarding material in the text chapters, assigned readings and assigned cases. Five sets of concepts are covered:

  • What is an Information System?
  • Distinctions between Data, Information and Knowledge
  • Basic Types of Information Systems
  • How Data, Information and Knowledge Are Used Within the Basic Types of Information Systems
  • Organizations’ Information Systems Implementation

 


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Guiding the Digital Transformation of Organizations

[ISBN: 978-0-9857955-0-4]

As information technologies (IT) become core elements of an organization’s competitive and operational strategies, executives, technologists and business professionals cannot ignore important decisions about their IT investments and IT-enabled business initiatives.  They must focus their attention toward alignment among business and technology strategies, competitive markets, organization structures and processes, implemented technologies, and people.  Sambamurthy and Zmud have in-depth experience in both interacting with executives, technologists and business professionals, and teaching these materials in graduate programs and executive programs.  They have drawn upon their experience in crafting this book on the strategic management and use of IT in organizations.  The book adopts an executive management perspective, but also ensures that the concepts and terminology being introduced are readily understood by readers from a variety of backgrounds and experiences.

The authors have specifically developed the book for the core course on IT Management in MBA programs, for Masters’ programs in information systems, and for executive education programs.  Both the authors have used earlier drafts of the book in a variety of courses for a number of years and have generated a stream of incremental improvements that have culminated in the publication of this book.  The book provides readers with an understanding of (1) how today’s organizations are using IT to improve business performance, and (2) the actions that must be taken in order for envisioned performance improvements to be realized.

Sambamurthy and Zmud believe that the truly value-adding uses of IT only arise through the synergistic efforts of business and IT professionals, across all organizational levels.  Business professionals hold knowledge and insight about business processes, products and services, customers, suppliers, and product-markets.  IT professionals hold knowledge and insight about the currently available technical alternatives, emerging technical alternatives, already-installed technologies, anticipated costs and resource requirements, vendors and service providers, consultants, and competitors’ use of technology.  However, the critical challenge for most organizations is to facilitate a dialog and shared understanding between their business and IT professionals – again, at all organizational levels.  The selection of topics (e.g., terms, concepts, frameworks, methodologies, etc.) for the book has been driven by a goal of providing common ground for such collaborations.  Thus, the audience for the book spills far beyond its use in educational programs to include all business and IT professionals who understand the difficulties associated with establishing and sustaining such collaborations and who desire to develop the knowledge and capabilities to engage in such collaborations.



Chapter Titles

  • Enhancing Competitiveness Through Information Technology
  • Competing in Digital Markets
  • Business Platforms
  • IT Infrastructure
  • IT Investment Value Pathways
  • Building Business Cases for IT Investment Proposals
  • The Digitized Enterprise
  • The Extended Digitized Enterprise
  • Implementation and Change Management
  • Project Management
  • IT Risk Management
  • IT Governance
  • Basic Concepts

Purchase Entire Digital Book (PDF format) or Selected Digital Chapters

Educator Access to Text Content and Supplementary Materials


Vallabh Sambamurthy

Vallabh Sambamurthy is the Eli Broad Professor of Information Technology at the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University. His research examines how firms successfully leverage information technologies in their business strategies, products, services, and organizational processes. His research adopts the perspectives of CIOs and top management teams. Much of his work has been funded by the Financial Executives Research Foundation, the Advanced Practices Council (APC) of SIM and the National Science Foundation. He has served as editor-in-chief of Information Systems Research, senior editor for MIS Quarterly, and departmental editor for the IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management. He was selected as a Fellow of the Association for Information Systems in 2009. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.

Robert Zmud

Robert W. Zmud is the George Lynn Cross Research Professor Emeritus at the Michael F. Price College of Business at the University of Oklahoma. His teaching and research interests focus on the business value of information technology, the management of information technology and the management of innovation. He served for 12 years as the Research Director for the Advanced Practices Council of SIM, International; and, he served as the editor-in-chief of MIS Quarterly and as a senior editor for: Information Systems Research, the Journal of the Association for Information Systems, and MIS Quarterly Executive. He is a recipient of the Association for Information Systems’ LEO Award and has been recognized as a Fellow of the Association of Information Systems, the Decision Science Institute and the INFORMS Information Systems Society. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.


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This book is clearly written for the MBA audience. Drawing on the wealth of experience of these two authors, the chapters provide in-depth analysis of the strategic IT issues facing current and future business leaders. There are no chapters on the fundamentals (i.e., what’s a database) but key technology concepts are woven throughout nicely partnered with key managerial concerns. I have used this book for two semesters; it helps foster deeper thinking among the students (in comparison to the book I used previously) and sets an appropriate tone for classroom discussion.

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Robust IT infrastructure is the cornerstone of successful research and development at National Weather Center in Norman, Oklahoma. Increased oversight into IT expenditures at all levels within government has made it imperative that defendable cost/benefit justifications can be made in an environment of decreasing resources. In early 2011, researchers were beginning a new project requiring high end computing to support advance numerical weather forecast models. To this end, those responsible for obtaining the IT technologies needed to meet the requirements of this project turned to the material presented in the chapter on ‘building business cases for IT investments’ of the new book by Sambamurthy and Zmud.

Several IT options were available to support the project including expanding existing infrastructure, leasing time on remote computers, purchasing new computers that would be owned and maintained locally, and leasing computers to be located onsite. The four options were evaluated using the framework for building both financial and strategic business cases presented in the chapter. Guidance was provide on monetizing the “real” cost of ownership of the various options that included recurring costs, cost avoidance strategies, reliability factors leading to system downtime (value enhancement), intangible costs, and staffing costs to keep the systems working.

Following the process outlined in the chapter, several options were removed from consideration for reasons related to risk and cost. The business case that resulted from this process used a combination of two of the proposed options. The strategy was accepted by management and the IT resources obtained successfully met the project goals.