This paper explores the role of Information Systems in breakthrough strategies and offers an alternative perspective to that found in most of the literature on this topic, which tends to be dominated by large organizations that deploy novel and specialized Information Systems. It presents a longitudinal case study of a comparatively small French based company that has crafted a breakthrough strategy using relatively modest 'off the shelf' Information Technology. It indicates that, firstly, breakthrough strategies are based more upon innovations in business models than innovations in technology and secondly, that breakthrough strategies may actually reduce a company's reliance on high-tech solutions as a means of maintaining their competitive advantage. The nature of breakthrough strategies is discussed and the paper examines how well they fit into Henderson and Venkatraman's model of strategic alignment. The study highlights some areas of similarity, such as the iterative and interactive nature of strategic alignment; it also highlights some the difficulties of representing this particular strategy using this model.
Kimble, Chris and Bourdon, Isabelle, "IT and Strategic Breakthroughs: How High Does High-Tech Need To Be?" (2011). UK Academy for Information Systems Conference Proceedings 2011. 26.