In this post Andrew McAfee at Harvard Business School has a detailed discussion about the impact of IT. He concludes with the following question:

What’s the correct way to think about IT’s effects going forward: diminished competitive significance because the technology innovations are being absorbed, or sustained significance because IT has moved industries into permanently higher rates of process innovation and replication?

Our research for the book provides strong evidence for the latter and that’s ultimately why we set out to write it in the first place.

Once the IT organisation has got its own house in order and gained the trust of the business, the route to effective IT-business alignment – understand and reflect the business; engage the business; and drive the business – and the enterprise architecture process that supports it is all about harnessing IT capabilities (people, technologies and practices) to support process innovation. That’s why, as we explain, the concept of business processes offers the most appropriate basis for analysing business activities and informing technology, investment and sourcing decisions.