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Abstract

Strategic alignment focuses on the activities that management performs to achieve cohesive goals across the IT (Information Technology) and other functional organizations (e.g., finance, marketing, H/R, manufacturing). Therefore, alignment addresses both how IT is in harmony with the business, and how the business should, or could be in harmony with IT. Alignment evolves into a relationship where the function of IT and other business functions adapt their strategies together. Achieving alignment is evolutionary and dynamic. It requires strong support from senior management, good working relationships, strong leadership, appropriate prioritization, trust, and effective communication, as well as a thorough understanding of the business and technical environments. Achieving and sustaining alignment demands focusing on maximizing the enablers and minimizing the inhibitors that cultivate alignment. The strategic alignment maturity assessment provides organizations with a vehicle to evaluate these activities. Knowing the maturity of its strategic choices and alignment practices make it possible for a firm to see where it stands and how it can improve. This paper discusses an approach for assessing the maturity of the business-IT alignment. Once maturity is understood, an organization can identify opportunities for enhancing the harmonious relationship of business and IT.

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