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Why is IT Special?


IT is special not because it is IT, but because IT tends to be responsible for a large part of HOW an Enterprise does what it does.

If we add a third SBU we may get the following.

We can work out the total amount of the How that each Business Unit is doing… (These figures are not entirely accurate because of the circular/recursive nature of them, however, they do illustrate the point, and it’s not the accurate numbers that are important but the overall story the numbers are telling us.)

These percentages are not a reflection of the importance of each BU, nor do they reflect how much each BU contributes to the bottom line. In a world before IT, no BU grew so much to completely dwarf other BUs because if it did, it is likely that it would have been divided up into more manageable PBUs or SBUs. When IT first began to be used by Enterprises, the IT BU was only responsible for a very low percentage of the overall How.

As time has gone by, the use of IT has grown and grown. More and more of the How was taken out of the BU where that work is done and wrapped up in IT systems. In many Enterprises this has now grown to such a point that in the example shown above where SBU3 equates to the IT BU. So, IT is a special case, but not because it’s IT. Only because it is responsible for the majority of the How of an Enterprise.

If the finance department was responsible for the majority of the How of an Enterprise, it too would require special analysis.


What would the percentages of What they do vs How they do it for the PBUs and SBUs in your Enterprise?

Which PBU or SBU is responsible for most of the How they do it of your Enterprise?


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