Sodah AKA “madunix” has held many positions in the IT realm, and is a 2019 EE MVE (Most Valuable Expert). Currently, he is an IT Director in the Amman Stock Exchange in Jordan, and is responsible for IT management, strategy, and execution. He supervises the IT operations and technical needs, and provides the necessary governance to facilitate the day to day business operations and effectively meet the goals of the business in the organization. In his eyes, IT strategy is no longer an afterthought, but an integral part of the overall organizational strategy.
In 2020, it has become increasingly clear that businesses must have the ability to adapt to a rapidly changing environment. When the entire world moved home in March, businesses’ agility and preparedness were put to the test. Businesses who had integrated their IT strategy deeply within their business strategy didn’t miss a beat, but others weren’t so lucky.
Sodah believes that poor integration of business strategy and IT strategy is caused by a disconnect between IT departments and business leaders. “Alignment” as he calls it, is fundamental to business success, and requires regular reviews, assessments, and adjustments. This means IT strategy must be discussed and prioritized at executive and board level meetings. In fact, IT strategy should be indistinguishable from business strategy.
It sounds great on paper, but real life application isn’t always easy.
It’s a complicated issue given that many businesses are constantly asking IT departments to do more with less. This is why Sodah stresses the importance of understanding the financial big picture, and having solid budget planning.
Of course, the responsibility of aligning strategies doesn’t fall solely on IT departments. Business leaders are just as (if not more) responsible. First and foremost, leaders must be ready and willing to give IT departments a seat at the table when high level decisions are being made. For example, cyber security is not simply an issue delegated to the IT department; maintaining a strong cyber security posture is fundamental to the health and growth of the business as a whole. A leadership team that chooses to neglect the IT department is increasing the business’ level of risk exponentially.
For Fadi Sodah and his organization, implementing IT strategy isn’t treated as a burden to progress. Instead, it’s seen as an opportunity for growth. According to Sodah, the goals of their IT strategy are to continuously improve the sustainability of their business by applying the best IT infrastructure and practices.
Gone are the days where IT strategy is limited to whether or not a company should upgrade to the latest version of Microsoft Office. In 2020, IT strategy has shifted from an often neglected business function, to an essential business component.
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