IT Strategy and Target Operating Model: A Crucial Interplay

In the complex, interconnected world of modern business, IT strategy and the Target Operating Model (TOM) are essential for businesses to achieve their goals and remain competitive. IT strategy is the overall plan that guides an organization's use of technology to meet its objectives. On the other hand, the TOM is a description of the desired state of the operational model of an organization. This article delves into these concepts, exploring their interplay and importance in creating successful business operations.

Understanding IT Strategy

IT strategy focuses on aligning technological resources with business objectives. It encompasses several aspects, including hardware, software, data management, and human resources involved in IT. In essence, it serves as the blueprint for how an organization will use technology to support, enhance, and grow its operations.

As part of the IT strategy, businesses must consider:

  1. Technological Trends: Businesses need to stay abreast of emerging technologies that could support their growth. This includes advancements like AI, machine learning, and blockchain technology.
  2. Security Measures: With cybersecurity threats on the rise, a comprehensive IT strategy must address security and data protection.
  3. Data Management: Companies are increasingly reliant on data for decision-making. Effective data management strategies ensure data is available, reliable, and used responsibly.
  4. Infrastructure and Operations: This involves the foundational IT requirements for running an organization, including network systems, servers, and operational protocols.

The Role of Target Operating Model

The Target Operating Model (TOM), in contrast, provides a clear vision of how an organization should operate to achieve its business strategy. It's the blueprint of an organization’s business operations, encompassing process, people, technology, and infrastructure. The TOM should be designed with an organization's strategic objectives, values, and capabilities in mind. It details aspects such as:

  1. Organizational Structure: The model outlines how departments and teams will be organized and how they will interact.
  2. Business Processes: It shows the key activities, workflows, and processes that will deliver value to customers.
  3. People and Skills: The TOM maps out the necessary skills and competencies, aligning them with the right roles and responsibilities.
  4. Technology and Infrastructure: It should detail the necessary technological and physical infrastructure to support the organization's operations.

The Interplay Between IT Strategy and TOM

The synergy between IT strategy and TOM is integral for the seamless operation and growth of a modern organization. The TOM provides the framework in which the IT strategy operates, establishing the desired future state of the organization. The IT strategy, in turn, provides the necessary technological roadmap to achieve that state.

For instance, the TOM might dictate a need for more automated and streamlined processes. The IT strategy can respond by incorporating AI and machine learning capabilities to automate routine tasks and workflows.

In essence, the TOM outlines the "what" and "why" - what the organization needs to look like and why this is beneficial to achieve strategic objectives. Simultaneously, the IT strategy answers the "how" - how the organization will use technology to get to that point.


In today's dynamic business environment, a well-articulated IT strategy and Target Operating Model are more than just management tools. They are essential components for survival and growth, shaping the way organizations adapt to changing market demands and technological advancements. When designed and implemented correctly, they can propel an organization to unprecedented heights of success and profitability. They provide a common understanding and a unified direction, ultimately driving efficiency, innovation, and competitive advantage.

Contact Beam for In-depth Insights

If you're interested in learning more about how Beam has successfully driven IT Strategy and Target Operating Model initiatives, we encourage you to get in touch with our team. We can provide detailed insights into the strategies and methods that have led to our successful transformations and business growth.

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