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Does IT Matter?

Does IT Matter?

Does IT Matter?

Information Technology and the Corrosion of Competitive Advantage

by Nicholas Carr

In a May 2003 article in the Harvard Business Review entitled “IT Doesn’t Matter,” Nicholas G. Carr introduced the idea that information technology (IT) does not provide a competitive advantage to companies in a strategic manner. In Does IT Matter?, Carr argues that IT has become a commodity, and because the very nature of strategy requires differentiation, IT cannot possibly qualify. IT can be used to supplement and improve strategy implementation, but it is not the foundation of a competitive advantage. To handle this new approach to IT, executives will have to prevent the commoditization of IT architecture and applications from destroying their companies’ barriers to competitive advantages.

What You'll Learn

  • How information technology (IT) transformed from a potential strategic advantage to a commoditized cost of doing business.
  • How the infrastructural technology of IT is like previous infrastructural innovations such as telephone lines and telegraph wires.
  • Why the only way for IT to fulfill its potential is to become a shared, standardized utility.
  • How mitigating risk and controlling cost are becoming more important than innovation and investment in IT.
  • How companies coming together to share new technology can corrode individual advantage while increasing the benefit for the economy at large.
  • How IT has affected productivity.
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