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Are efficiency gains ALL that we can expect from ICT?
LUBNA ALAM: Let’s look at what we have covered this week. Through the restaurant scenario, we looked at how automation can deliver business value by making business processes more efficient. But let me ask you, is that all we could gain from introducing an IT system into a restaurant? The answer is no. Through automation, we could also informate. When we have an automated system, sure, we have efficiency gains. But then, it also captures a lot of information that otherwise would just disappear. For example, the time of the order, what they ordered, who was the waiter or waitress who was taking this order? The restaurant can use this information for efficient staffing, product innovation, and predictive inventory control.
So automating the front end of the business provides an opportunity in the back end to make better decisions with the information gathered. It also enables the business model to align and evolve with IT investment. So we learned that ICT investments can deliver business value through automation and information, and business value in return can generate competitive advantage. It is critical for any investment, including IT investments, that it must fit with the organisation’s business model for it to generate business value.

Are efficiency gains ALL that we can expect from ICT?

This week we introduced the notion of competitive advantage and how it can be gained through investment in and implementation of information technology.

Next week you will explore the competitive value of the information generated in more detail. We will dig deeper into the granular information derived from data analytics and see how it can be used to improve decision making and increase returns on ICT investment.

Your task

Having already shared your highlights of the week, it’s now time to share what you are looking forward to the most next week.

Remember the 3C philosophy in giving and receiving the feedback – be curious, be constructive and be compassionate with others!

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Competitive Advantage: Using Information to Build Business Success

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