IT has escaped the toolbox

Good reading from the FT for CIOs and anyone guiding an organisation’s IT support strategy – Does business understand technology any more?

The gist, largely from Steve Prentice at Gartner, is that IT’s done automation and productivity, it’s doing optimisation (costs, reliability) and it’s moving into social areas that many at the top don’t get:

Today’s technology is all about communities… a successful organisation today needs to operate in a much more refined and subtle way, which for some could mean fundamental changes to business models. It involves more listening, watching, being in tune and in touch, engaging with every interested party, being responsive to communities.

Success will come from letting go of the message and becoming part of the conversation. Sounds rather familiar – democratisation? – but the technologies that will allow or force it are blossoming fast – Facebook, Twitter, Google Wave…