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IT Commoditization Unexpectedly Aids Competitive Advantage

Predictions that IT operations would migrate away from corporate control to outsourcers may not be coming true.

Franconia, NH, November 18, 2006 --( A paper published in the Summer 2006 issue of MIT Sloan Management Review by Hank Marquis titled “Finishing Off IT” provides evidence that in the short time since Nicholas Carr wrote the article “The End of Corporate Computing,” there is evidence that companies are already choosing to return control of certain essential functions to their own IT departments.

Hank Marquis, Chief Technology Officer at itSM Solutions LLC, examines failed IT outsourcing relationships and identifies key aspects of IT, including auditing and reporting procedures and customer-facing resources that are too important to a firm’s success to outsource.

“It is clear that IT has become a commodity, but commoditization breeds dependency, and dependency breeds regulation. Regulation arising from society’s dependence makes IT too critical to risk outsourcing. There is growing evidence that companies are already choosing to return control of essential functions to their own IT departments because of increased regulation,” says Marquis.

Marquis re-examines the role of IT as a commodity and considers whether IT can still be used to provide strategic advantage. In discussing regulation, outsourcing relationships and corporate dependence on IT, Marquis suggests that in-house corporate computing can still provide a strategic advantage.

According to Hank Marquis, “In-house corporate computing can and does still provide a strategic advantage - but only when managed the right way. Technology doesn’t matter,” continues Marquis “today what matters is how you manage and use technology.”

Marquis argues that to better exploit these advantages, managers must embrace the fact that IT is no different than any other corporate function, instead of placing it in its own silo separate from other business practices. Only then will the real commoditization of IT be complete and the long-promised benefits be seen.

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with Hank Marquis please see the contact information.

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Hank Marquis
617 532 0711

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