My IT Platform, My Competitive Advantage

Bill Owens, CEO - Veracity

In talking to hundreds, if not thousands of businesses over the years, we recognise that some executives do not like IT, many don’t understand IT, and more than a few fear IT. Why is this? Most board directors, CEOs, CFOs, COOs and CMOs that we meet daily are engaging, intelligent, progressive lifelong learners. Why are we so uncomfortable with IT compared to other areas of business?

When we examine the finances for example, we rely on our P&L, balance sheet, and cashflow analyses to understand how our business is tracking. We use these financial tools to resource, forecast growth, and anticipate bumps in the road.

We have learned how to ‘read’ and interpret these financial reports at school, university and on-the-job. There is a standard system, and assumptions that we have learned, and through repeatedly applying them over and over again, we get better at understanding the trends, risks and opportunities. We become comfortable and confident with finance because we have a rationale framework to follow. When we get stuck, we call our accountant to sort out specific issues. It’s a similar picture for marketing with the ‘four P’ model – product, price, place and promotion.

But what about IT? We have found over the years is that unlike finance, marketing, and other functional areas, executives do not have a standard framework to use when assessing IT efficiency, considering IT integrations, scoping IT investments, developing IT strategies, or quantifying IT risks.

It’s all a jumble of servers, cloud compute, 5G, devices, finance applications, machine learning, routers, switches, cybersecurity, broadband, firewalls, automation, websites, telephony, apps, mobile, integration, AI, CRM, Essential Eights, hosting and a range of acronyms that no one understands outside the IT world, but “whatever you do, make sure you have a good API in place so you don’t have to download and upload those CSV files”. Where do you start?

Without a standard IT framework in place, it would be almost impossible to systematically assess the fitness of your existing IT platform. If your business is governed by a board, directors would find it very difficult to apply any governance oversight over an IT environment that wasn’t transparently structured.

We see so many IT platforms, in businesses of all sizes, that have grown organically, with very little design or strategic purpose, delivering duplicated [CG1] functionality, burdensome complexity, stifling inefficiencies and unnecessary costs.

Without a well understood IT framework embedded in your business and understood by all, IT will remain an operational, reactionary issue in the hands of internal or external ‘IT experts’ rather than at the strategic heart of your business delivering competitive advantage.

At Veracity, we transform business by working with you to review, scope, design, build, and remotely support your IT platform for competitive advantage. We put IT at the strategic epicentre of your business.

At the next Queensland Leaders event, on 15th April we will share how to create your own IT framework to suit your business, so that you can start applying it to gain cost efficiencies, increase productivity and develop strategic insights to design and develop your IT platform for competitive advantage.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like to discuss your IT challenges.

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Bill Owens, CEO - Veracity | Email: | Website:

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