Abstract

Extant strategy concepts are challenged due to an increasing demand for agility in highly digit-ized markets. Concepts relying on separate constructs for IT and business, such as IT alignment, are well researched and applied in practice. The ongoing process of digitization developed digital infrastructures which fundamentally change conditions for all market participants, culminating in business models completely based on IT. This research gives first insights for a comparison of the concept of IT alignment with the recently introduced “digital business strategy” (DBS), which describes a cross-functional and agile fusion of business and IT strategy. Based on an online survey among 255 IT decision makers in IT-intensive industries in the U.S., this exploratory study measures DBS and IT alignment within one quantitative structural equation model. We especially focus on how organizational leaders from both the IT and business side influence the two different strategy concepts: The results reveal a total absence of an influence of the IT leader on DBS directly, whereas a high impact on IT alignment is still given. Business leaders in turn impact more on DBS than on IT alignment. We thus contribute to IT strategy lit-erature and provide impulses for discussing future role definitions of CIOs.

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