Does Information Technology Matter?

Some, like Mr. Nicholas G. Carr, who write in the Harvard Business Review that IT does not matter, in an article titled, “IT Doesn’t Matter.” say IT does not matter. In some ways I tend to agree, that it’s not so much about the technology but HOW it is used.
In a book review, the NY Times writes His basic point is straightforward. At one time, information technology was so expensive and so difficult to manage that companies could make large amounts of money simply by being able to make systems work. (Think I.B.M.)
Companies that lacked the skills to manage information technology effectively suffered compared with competitors that had mastered those skills. But over the years, as information technology has become cheaper and more manageable, this source of competitive advantage has been reduced and perhaps eliminated. Hiring knowledgeable employees is much easier than it used to be, and the tools to manage this technology are far more powerful than they were a few short years ago. Nowadays anybody can set up a Web server, or an accounting system, or an inventory management system.
The ability to manage technology effectively is no longer the barrier to entry it once was. Hence, it no longer serves as a source of competitive advantage.

Maybe for larger businesses, IT does not matter. Maybe for larger businesses IT is a commodity like water – that everyone has. But for smaller businesses at least – believe me – forget Carr and the NY Times, IT does matter in a big way.

(According to Nicholas G. Carr, knowing how to use information technology now is like knowing how to run an assembly line, whether building a Model T or a computer)

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Ramon Ray, Editor & Technology Evangelist, Smallbiztechnology.com . Editor and Founder, Smart Hustle Magazine Full bio at http://www.ramonray.com . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook