Developing appropriate information systems strategies (ISS) is vital, yet problematic, especially for small firms given their organizational context. However, resource-based theory may offer a solution. Building on earlier work that identified the potential from resource-based strategy for ISS, this paper considers the role of core capabilities in organizations competing in dynamic markets. Core capabilities are deconstructed into competences, processes and externalities to enable identification of future information systems. A fourth element of the analysis, evaluation, provides an opportunity to address issues that affect potential solutions. These four components form the 'CPX framework'. The framework is applied to a case firm to demonstrate its value within the overall development of an ISS. Discussion of the framework's potential and issues for future research are identified.