Does It Matter?: Information Technology and the Corrosion of Competitive Advantage Hardcover – May 18 2004
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"Honourable Mention" in Harvey Schacter's Column: "Pick Up the Feiner Points in Best of Year's Top 10 Books" column -- Globe and Mail, December 15, 2004
About the Author
Nicholas G. Carr is a former Executive Editor and Editor-at-Large for Harvard Business Review.
Top Customer Reviews
He also seems to contradict himself regarding ERP and Web browsing software. On page 113 he states, "Yet the vast majority of workers who use PCs rely on only a few simple applications - word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail, and Web Browsing". But earlier he writes, "ERP packages promised to solve, and sometimes did solve, one of the most daunting and expensive problems facing modern companies: the proliferation of narrow, discrete software applications" (pg 46). And on page 115, he describes how one business improved productivity by getting rid of Web browsers.
Make no mistake, Carr does not make claims that technical innovation is unimportant, nor does he claim that technology properly applied is useless. At issue is the way that technology is misused, which goes back to the fact that IT is so focused on technology that business suffers from unfulfilled promises, application of technology to non-problems, and plain arrogance of those who are supposed to be providing services and solutions to support business imperatives.
This book is must reading by the CxO community. It should wake up the business executives to the fallacies foisted upon them by IT to the point where CIOs and senior IT executives will be held accountable for how well they support business initiatives instead of how technically advanced their shops are. To that end the fact that this book is published by Harvard Business School Press, meaning that it stands a chance of being read by outsiders who do have the power to demand changes in IT, is one of the valuable aspects of this work.
Summarizing, this book is about chronic problems that plague most IT shops, and is also about looking at IT in a more objective way. Do not expect solutions because they are in short supply in this book, but do expect an honest look at the way IT has diverged from being a business support function to being a money pit for corporate resources. Also expect to see technology and IT services placed in their proper context, with all of the hype and mystery stripped away.
Most recent customer reviews
'Does IT Matter' is a difficult book to rate. As to the questions it raises, it deserves 5 stars. But its answers, are two-star, at best. Read morePublished on July 8 2004 by Ben Rothke
Readers of this book should also read books on Enterprise Architecture as a solution to the concerns raised by the author.Published on July 5 2004 by Ramesh Sadagopan
You may recall the uproar in 2003 around a short Harvard Business Review article entitled "IT Doesn't Matter". Read morePublished on July 4 2004 by David Bridgeland
Although this is certainly a book about information technology - and a very illuminating one - I would argue that it's primarily about business strategy rather than technology. Read morePublished on June 30 2004
I started this book with an open mind and read it in about 2 days. It is an easy read but delivers little. Read morePublished on June 23 2004
Full Title: Does IT Matter? Information Technology and the Corrosion of Competitive Advantage -- With $2 trillion being spent on computers and communications each year there is an... Read morePublished on June 23 2004 by John Matlock
Just reading through the reviews already posted here shows how big a stir Carr's ideas have caused. Because of vested interests or emotional ties, some people have a deep fear of... Read morePublished on May 30 2004
It's star time. While filling in for a 'let go' editor of the Harvard Business Review (HBR), a business writer with no personal involvment or experience in IT uses prime-time pages... Read morePublished on May 29 2004
Happened to pick up and browse through this paperweight at the airport and patted myself for not having bought it. Read morePublished on May 28 2004 by Nearly Nubile
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