How long is a piece of string? More specifically, how long is an acceptable return on investment?
Chances are you used to have more time. If you’re responsible for IT, you used to have time to think, buy, implement and wait. You’d have a period of time – not necessarily strictly defined – to prove ROI.
Now, eveything has changed. The downturn has sharpened everyone’s desire to see quick wins; if technology can’t pay for itself quickly why would the business bother paying?
The change in economic conditions has been matched by the pace of change in IT, with the business now able to draw on a series of consumer, social and cloub-based technologies that would have seemed impossible just a few years ago.
The result is a severe shortening in the time horizon for ROI. Business cases simply must show a quick ROI – six months is acceptable, two years is far too vague.
Does this shortening of ROI time frames sound familiar? How do you prove ROI in an age of fast-changing economic and technological conditions? And what do such changes mean for the role of the person responsible for running IT?
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