MIS Quarterly Executive


IT executives in most large enterprises must build organizations that can adapt and thrive in a global economy while operating with fewer resources. Yet despite implementing sophisticated organizational redesigns and collaboration technologies, improvements in performance are frequently disappointing. All too often, the problem can be traced to patterns of intra-firm collaboration that do not adapt to support strategic objectives and new organizational designs.This article describes one organization’s five-year journey in applying organizational network analysis (ONA) to help it transform from a regional to a global IT function by selectively investing in and tracking the improvement of its collaboration and social networks. It shows how performance transformation can be achieved through targeted efforts to align an organization’s informal collaboration networks with strategic objectives. Based on the experience of this organization, the article concludes with three lessons that can be applied by IT leaders as they seek to improve performance in a global environment.