Enterprise Development – Definition and Objectives

Digitalization is fundamentally changing every business and industry. Existing business boundaries are blurring as digital interconnections increase. Value creation and value destruction from digitalization are rapidly reshaping the whole ecosystem. The success of the business is increasingly dependent on how well IT succeeds in becoming a business enabler.

Digitalization enables organizations to interact with their customers in a profound way. Digitalization changes how organizations relate to their customers, deliver products and services, do preventive maintenance and add totally new functions and features to their existing offerings. With IT, it is possible to boost the efficiency of operations, create cost savings, and build competitive advantage through new business models, products, and services enabled by technology. All this is done together with Business Development or the Chief Digital Officer (CDO) who is responsible for digitalizing customer and product processes with the support of Marketing and Business Intelligence. Creating a good customer experience and successfully utilizing the Internet of Things (IoT) requires analytics and a holistic use of Enterprise Information data.


Figure 2.1.1 Enterprise Development – responsibilities and ownership patterns.


The illustration above helps clarify the responsibilities of IT and Business by showing their ownership patterns. The CDO looks after the best interest of the customer and develops the customer experience together with IT and Business. Business is responsible for leading the digitalization of the outer layers that interface with customers and other important interest groups. IT, on the other hand, is responsible for end user and business solutions that enable digitalization.

Enterprise Development is about planning objectives, prioritizing development initiatives, and developing concepts and processes for digitalization. Enterprise Development is related to Business Development, but is limited in scope to processes, solutions and data that enable business, while the latter has focus outside the organization’s boundaries in markets and products that create business.

Enterprise Development is the most important driver and control mechanism for the company’s IT operations and their development. The objective of Enterprise Development is to implement company strategy and business goals by means of information and communication technology; to make decisions on projects, investments and development initiatives; and to ensure business continuity. In order for the cooperation between Business and IT to be functional and consistent, they must share a working governance model, a common language and communication methods.

Key Objectives of Enterprise Development

  • Implement the enterprise digitalization strategy and initiatives in cooperation between business and IT.
  • Maintain a governance structure to gain commitment from Business and IT for common objectives.
  • Develop business processes and concepts, decide on development priorities and investments, and ensure business continuity.

Enterprise Development – Roles and Competence Requirements

Good collaboration between business and IT is the essence of effective Enterprise Development. Business executives have a key role in deciding on development initiatives. In accordance with their corporate governance roles, they are also key decision makers in Portfolio Management. For this reason, Project and Service Portfolio Management serve as the ultimate bodies for control and decision-making in Enterprise Development and IT operations.

Business Engagement Managers (BEM), one for each major business or function, are responsible for business-IT alignment from strategy to tactical management and for following up on operational actions. However, the collaboration has many more levels than a single contact person. A modern IT organization faces business in many ways and needs to carefully build a trusted partner status among various stakeholders (Figure 2.1.2 How IT is seen by different stakeholders)


Figure 2.1.2 How IT is seen by different stakeholders.


IT must enable enterprise development. This requires close and active collaboration with all stakeholders.

Key Partners in Enterprise Development and Digitalization

  1. IT Steering Group
  2. Project Portfolio Steering Group
  3. Service Portfolio Steering Group
  4. Chief Information Officer
  5. Chief Digital Officer
  6. Business Engagement Manager

Enterprise Development connects the other four streams of the IT Standard with a focus on how IT creates value for the business, and how business can benefit from IT.

All IT-related decision-making that has an impact on business must go through the governance bodies of Enterprise Development. The interface between Enterprise Development and the other streams of the IT Standard consist of the following functions:

  • Business Relationship Management
  • Governance, Objectives and Communication
  • Concept Development
  • Ecosystem Management
  • Project Portfolio Management
  • Business Process Development
  • Service Portfolio Management
  • Enterprise Information Management
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