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FUSION How to move beyond Alignment and transform IT in your organization

Peter Hinssen


ISBN 978908 276 pages Hardcover

It’s time to completely rethink IT It’s time for a radical change in IT It’s time for Fusion Fusion starts where Alignment stops: it turns CIOs into business leaders, injects business savvy into the IT department, and transforms IT into the organization everyone wants to work in. Fusion makes a job in IT attractive again.

There is a fundamental dilemma in the world of IT: the technical challenges and opportunities have never been greater, but at the same time the role of IT and the role of the CIO has never been questioned more. The relationship between business and IT is in many companies at an all-time low. The model of Alignment that we’ve pursued for more than 20 years in IT doesn’t work anymore. It’s time for change. It’s time for a radical change in the relationship between business and IT. It’s time for Fusion.

Fusion is about blending IT into the business, and is a recipe for business integration and innovation. Fusion is about the future evolution of IT. Fusion is the future of IT. This book provides a roadmap for the journey to completely rethink IT, and transform IT into something radically new. Gone is the old IT. Long live Fusion. Let this book be your guide to the metamorphosis of IT.

In times of economic downturn your business needs IT leaders, not followers. Fusion can help CIOs and IT managers to become real heroes in tough economic times, and can help expose the true value of IT.


Why this book? Life has never been more challenging in the world of IT, but at the same time the role of IT and the role of the CIO have never been more questioned. This dilemma is a fundamental indicator that we’re at the tipping point of a dramatic change in IT, a complete repositioning of IT and a need for a new breed of IT professionals to tackle these challenges. The bad news is that the role of IT - and the role of the CIO in particular - has never been scrutinized more than today. In a lot of companies there is very little trust between business and IT and every single incident or issue is seen as an opportunity to highlight the incompetency of the technology department. This is no surprise as only 25% of IT projects are deemed successful and billions are spent on ill-conceived technology projects. In the past 30 years, wonderful models have been developed on the relationship between business and IT. In spite of all these models there has been no major improvement on the trust between business and IT. On the contrary, the trust between business and IT in most companies has never been as bad as it is today.


In today’s economic climate, we have to find the possibilities to completely rethink IT, and transform IT into a strategic asset for our companies. But this won’t be an incremental change; this will be a fundamental paradigm shift. It’s time for IT 2.0, and this book can be your guidebook.

Tipping point

IT 1.0

IT 2.0 Time

What will you learn in this book? For more than 15 years, we’ve studied the concept of Alignment between business and IT. Alignment talks about the relationship, positioning and role-patterns between the IT department and the various business functions. Models have been produced, papers have been written, and patterns have been identified. We now know more than ever before about the mechanics of Alignment, and still the relationship between business and IT in most companies has never been worse. So, is Alignment a dead-end street? We believe the new concept is Fusion. And really, we don’t mean that Fusion is just the ‘new word’ for Alignment. Although the underlying principle remains the same, Fusion holds a much stronger and powerful meaning - where Alignment calls for a two-party system to collaborate, Fusion is about a strong convergence between the two. Even the two melting together. Fusion means blending IT into the business, and no longer treating IT as a supplier but completely integrating IT into the business. This has great potential, because instead of wasting a lot of energy in fighting between business and IT, you use this energy in allowing IT professionals to work with the business to deliver results in a more efficient and effective way. 2

IT 1.0

IT 2.0

Alignment Control Nerds Frameworks Introvert Silos Closed Upgrade Know Cost

Fusion Risk Hybrids Culture Extrovert Mashups Open Evolve Feel Value

Fusion results in a melting pot of business and IT thus paving the way for more innovative and integrated business models. Fusion will put IT into the business, and fully into the strategic and operational reality of a business, instead of seeing IT as a ‘staff function’. It is time for a major transformation of IT. It is time for a quantum leap. For years, the way we have run IT, as a CIO, was to command an army of ordertaking specialist workers, an underground army hidden away in the basement of our companies. These reactive armies of craftsmen are a thing of the past. Fusion will allow companies to focus on technology-enabled innovation, instead of just on the commodity-saving potential of technology. Fusion will allow a new type of organization to be created, out of the ashes of the old IT department that will evolve from an ‘executional technology function’ towards a ‘proactive strategic innovation function’. Fusion will allow companies to focus on maximizing value from technology innovation. This ‘new’ way of thinking about IT, is what we refer to as IT 2.0.

Which questions will be answered in this book? ● What is business/IT Fusion and what is the difference with business/ ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

IT Alignment? How will the new Fusion of business and IT function, particularly in its relationship with the business customers and with its suppliers? What will the new IT organization look like from a Fusion perspective? What are the tools and mechanisms to make Fusion work? How can we implement ‘intelligent governance’ and move from budget thinking to portfolio thinking? How can I use the concept of architecture and turn this into a business instrument? How will we staff these new IT organizations? What type of skills do we need, and how will we attract them? How can I rebuild the image of IT, and market technology innovation to the business? What will the new breed of CIO look like, who can transform IT into a Fusion concept? How to build a ‘new deal’ between Business and IT, and how to maintain it?

Who should read this book? Both IT and business people who want to know more about the relationship between business and IT, the new role of IT (and of the CIO), and how to turn your business/IT cooperation into a proactive strategic innovative relationship.


Synopsis 1. The past, present and future of IT Why it’s time for a ‘New Deal’ between business and IT. We’ve had EDP for 20 years. We’ve had IT for twenty years. It’s time for a change, a radical change. It’s time for IT 2.0.

2. The elements of Fusion We think the old ‘island of IT’ is a concept that is dead in the water. We believe that we should not just be concerned with ‘aligning business and IT’, but that we should be busy integrating IT into the business. We believe the time has come for business and IT to fuse. ● Why is Alignment a dead-end street? ● What does the concept of Fusion mean for IT? ● What are the elements of Fusion, and how to apply them?

3. Models that work Over the course of the last fifteen years of study and research into the field of Alignment, a number of models have proven to be extremely valuable, or at least interesting, to look at the business & IT Alignment domain. Are these models still relevant in a Fusion context? Absolutely, because these models can be used in the transition towards a state of Fusion, and can in a lot of cases form a source of inspiration to look at the dialogue between business and IT. ● The models of Alignment. ● The models of Fusion.

4. People: the new IT crowd What type of people do you need in a Fusion process? For a very long time, we’ve hired extremely technical specialists into our IT departments, and we have created armies of semi-autistic, communicationally-challenged deep-technical Nerds. In a Fusion concept, we need a new breed of professionals, with a new blend of capabilities. When you transform your IT department, the most important priority should be on people and culture. They are the foundation of the new IT. ● What does the ‘people’ element in a Fusion process entail? ● Which blend of people will we need to attract, hire, train or develop, and how can you do that? ● How can you crack the ‘culture’ code in an IT transformation?

5. The new CIO: from Robin to Batman In the successful transformation of IT, perhaps the Fusion of IT and business, no factor is as determinate and as crucial as the profile of the CIO. What does the new CIO look like, and what role can they play?

6. The marketing of IT Building up the communication skills, and developing a marketing mindset within IT is just part of an overall approach to strive towards better IT Alignment, and a totally new relationship between business and IT. Building a better communication will be essential in our drive to radiate IT leadership.


● What is the rationale for communication in IT, and what are the mechanisms for

communicating with the business on IT-related matters? ● How do we build a communication and marketing strategy for the information technology function? ● How can you raise the communication potential and marketing savvyness of your IT staff?

7. Intelligent governance: beyond IT governance Most IT departments have set up IT governance purely in a ‘monitor and control’ mentality, burdening the IT department with extremely heavy compliancy, rules and procedures, and with the result that the business customer of IT now is confronted with a bureaucratic IT apparatus that kills all creativity, flexibility and innovation. If we go from IT governance to the concept of ‘intelligent governance’, and turn the static budgeting process into a dynamic portfolio mechanism, then we can truly revive the governance domain from a sluggish bottleneck into an accelerator of change and a catalyst for the Fusion process between business and IT. ● Demonstrate that governance can also be an intelligent mechanism to create more value with IT. ● Explore the difference between ‘budget’ thinking and ‘portfolio’ thinking. ● Show how to use the concept of Intelligent Governance as a mechanism for Fusion between business and IT.

8. Architects of Change: using scenario planning in IT Architecture will be a key component in rethinking IT. Architecture should provide us with the tools and the mechanisms to not just think about today, but about the future of using technology in our companies. Enterprise architecture should become a weapon of change: instead of a static interpretation of the current, it should become an instrument for dealing with the constant flux. ● Explore the notion of Enterprise Architecture, and what it means in a business/ IT Fusion context. ● Elaborate on the concept of scenario planning as a mechanism to look at the dynamic aspects of Architecture. ● Investigate the role and the profile of the architect.

9. The Fusion roadmap: a practical guide to a new IT ● A roadmap for IT going forward. ● Conducting an assessment of where you are. ● Mapping out the work necessary to reshape the IT department. ● Where will the Fusion of business and IT lead our industry, and where could it

lead you?

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Business/ITFUSION Leaflet  
Business/ITFUSION Leaflet  

How to move beyond Alignment and transform IT in your organization