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The Difference Between IT Strategy and Digital Strategy

by Dave Aron  |  November 12, 2013  |  Comments Off on The Difference Between IT Strategy and Digital Strategy

I am really enjoying Gartner’s Barcelona Symposium. Having lots of animated discussions around digital strategy, chief digital officer etc. Plenty of differences of opinion; some great exploratory discussions. I would like to share something I said in one of my presentations that a lot of people told me they found useful:

IT Strategy is a technical answer to a business question: “How will IT help the business win?”. It assumes the business strategy is set, then considers how to use IT to make that strategy successful. IT Strategy is usually conducted downstream of/ after business strategy.

Digital Business Strategy is a business answer to a digital question: “How should our business evolve to survive and thrive in an increasingly digital world?” It is not a separate strategy, but instead a lens on business strategy. All aspects of the business strategy should be informed by digital considerations.

Every business and public sector agency needs both an IT Strategy and a Digital Business Strategy. They must be highly aligned with each other, but they are not the same thing.

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Dave Aron
VP & Gartner Fellow
9 years with Gartner
26 years in IT industry

Dave Aron is a vice president and distinguished analyst in Gartner's CIO Research group, focusing on IT leadership issues. Mr. Aron is a thought leader on business and IT strategy, mergers and acquisitions, CEO-CFO-CIO interactions, benefits realization, governance….Read Full Bio

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