Rationale

by Ahmad
(Iran )

Original Text: Rationale


3.1. Rationale for studying IT flexibility
Mckay and Brockway 28 explained IT infrastructure as assisting the support of shared IT potential which the entire organization depends on. It is disputed that IT infrastructure should be flexible in order to be competent to cope with the growing demands of customers without increasing costs 29. Duncan 30 established IT infrastructure-flexibility as connectivity, compatibility and modularity. Connectivity and compatibility are linked to the idea of reach and range 31, which relate to the sharing of a common set of IT resources with internal and external users. Duncan 30 defined connectivity as “the ability of any technology component to attach to any of the other components inside and outside the organizational environment”. Byrd and Turner 32 stated that compatibility was “the ability to share any type of information across any technology component”, and modularity was “the ability to add, modify and remove any software, hardware or data components of the infrastructure with ease and with no major overall effect”. Few experimental studies tested if IT infrastructure flexibility enabled strategic alignment 33.
If an organization benefits from continuous alignment, ignoring the strategy it pursues, IT will be competent to offer the necessary support even in the case where due to increased volatility, strategy evolves or changes direction. Take the instance of airlines such as Delta and United which had earlier added low-cost carriers to their fleet. The main question was: Whether IT infrastructure could accommodate the additional booking load or if a totally new and separate infrastructure was required. Abercrombie and Fitch (a fashion retailer) were among other organizations that added distinct sports and junior clothing shops with the least effort. The underlying IT infrastructure of these stores, drawing various demographic segments and making the most of distinct brand strategies, was adaptable to the point that it could undoubtedly keep up with the needs of all stores concurrently. This flexibility has a meaning in alignment: either addition of new lines of business or increasing the capacity of business where firms increase the magnitude and scope of their strategy; therefore, IT has to be able to embrace the underlying changes in business strategy in order to provide support for it all the time 34.

Reconsidering the literature revealed the IT flexibility is the most crucial aspect of keeping up strategic alignment for today’s establishments and in addition, studies in this factor are limited. Therefore, we will study the effects this factor has on alignment in this research.

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Revised Text:

3.1. Rationale for studying IT flexibility

Mckay and Brockway 28 explained IT infrastructure as: assisting the support of shared IT potential which the entire organization depends on. It is disputed that IT infrastructure should be flexible in order to be competent to cope with the growing demands of customers, without increasing costs 29. Duncan 30 established IT infrastructure-flexibility as: connectivity, compatibility and modularity.

Connectivity and compatibility are linked to the idea of reach and range 31, which relate to the sharing of a common set of IT resources with internal and external users. Duncan 30 defined connectivity as, “the ability of any technology component to attach to any of the other components inside and outside the organizational environment”. Byrd and Turner 32 stated that compatibility was “the ability to share any type of information across any technology component”, and modularity was “the ability to add, modify and remove any software, hardware or data components of the infrastructure with ease and with no major overall effect”. Few experimental studies tested whether IT infrastructure flexibility enabled strategic alignment 33.

If an organization benefits from continuous alignment, ignoring the strategy it pursues, IT will be competent to offer the necessary support, even in the case where due to increased volatility, strategy evolves or changes direction. Take the example of airlines such as Delta and United, which had previously added low-cost carriers to their fleet. The main question was: Whether IT infrastructure could accommodate the additional booking load or if a totally new and separate infrastructure was required.

Abercrombie and Fitch (a fashion retailer) was among the companies that added distinct sports and junior clothing shops with the least effort. The underlying IT infrastructure of these stores, drawing various demographic segments and making the most of distinct brand strategies, was adaptable to the point that it could undoubtedly keep up with the needs of all the shops concurrently. This flexibility has a meaning in alignment: either addition of new lines of business or increasing the capacity of business where firms increase the magnitude and scope of their strategy; therefore, IT has to be able to embrace the underlying changes in the business strategy in order to provide support for it all the time 34.

Reconsidering the literature revealed that IT flexibility is the most crucial aspect in keeping up strategic alignment for today’s establishments, and additionally that studies for this factor are limited. Therefore, we will study the effects this factor has on alignment in this research.

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