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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Consumerization Inside Enterprises Reinforces The Idea : IT is Business

When more and more focus is put on innovation, its evolution, growth and in managing innovation while looking through what conventional collaborative mechanism in fusion with powerful mechanisms like internet enabled collaboration could help achieve –all these point to a world of immense possibilities. With a dominant number of internet users poised to take a dip in the virtual world, the virtual world could become more and more real!! Apple and the high tech semicon industry can vouch for the pull from the consumer segment – for both of them, consumer segment happens to be the largest consuming class!

The interesting part is that the consumerization of IT is creating a whole new world, all managed by a new set of rules. The impact of consumerization on enterprise and opportunities to leverage such advances are all groomed in the consumer space itself. The transition of such things into enterprise IT thereby happens automatically – in a way, advances in consumer space dictates the corresponding fallout in the enterprise space. Many of the digital collaboration mechanisms are made available at throwaway prices today. This creates so much pressure inside enterprises such that the IT departments are forced to give corporate users access to the scale and innovation of the consumer market. True, but difficult to believe – right? An analysis of the past shows that in a significant number of cases the technologies that were originally focused on consumer space have made deep impact over time on the enterprise space – Personal computers, search, IM all are shining examples of this powerful trend. Native web companies keep coming out with a lot of full blown but trial offerings that entices lot many more consumers and many a times a revenue and utilization value evolves out of more and more usage of such offerings. In the process, the consumer space gets more and richer forcing successful offering(s) to be pushed into the enterprise –in larger numbers and faster pace.

Consumerization opens up the organization to consumer-grade services that innovate at a much faster pace than the organization can. –providing in the process, an unmatchable potential for handsome returns to business. Productivity could rise as workers become less tied to the office. consumerisation is also forcing massive changes in resource consumption - consumerization offers a path to reducing a company’s carbon footprint by encouraging telecommuting and Internet-based applications run by mega-scale server farms, which are in many cases powered by greener energy sources and are more energy efficient than hardware in corporate data centers. Large corporates are beginning to adopt such technologies aggressively. With an impending explosive growth of communication and broadband capabilities, the medium of virtual reality/world is sure to take a central seat. Clearly the virtual reality movement does not appear to be a fad per se but can help business create and define new frontiers in its growth path. Implementing IT consumerization is not a major technical challenge, but it does need effective organizational change management discipline . What should the CXO’s do in such contexts: Beat the status quo. Break any resistance that comes from outsourcing partners who come in the way of faster adoption of consumer technologies inside the enterprise. By definition, consumerization is at odds with the notion of paying such high or fixed costs and, therefore, is perceived to be against outsourcers’ interests. .Embrace such technologies faster and in innovative ways align them to their business growth plans. Consumer technologies are not a taboo to be shunned - these need to be constantly assessed for their potential for innovative leverage in growing business. This could end up forcing a larger role for IT in Business further reinforcing the idea that IT is Business.

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