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Running Head: HEFTY HARDWARE CASE STUDY

Hefty Hardware Case Study


Venkata Reddy Kasam
Wilmington University

HEFTY HARDWARE CASE STUDY

1. How effective is the partnership between IT and the business at Hefty Hardware? Identify the
shortcomings of both IT and the business.
The partnership between IT and the business at Hefty Hardware is not effective and
seems to be toxic. The chief information officer at Hefty gets replaced about every 2 or 3 years
because of this ineffective partnership (Slentz, 2013). The shortcomings for both IT and the
business are identified as follows:
The partnership between business and IT at Hefty hardware is not very good and each side feels
that the other side does not really understand what their requirements and problems are.
Shortcomings of IT
The business folks think that they are unnecessarily investing millions of dollars into IT,
which they feel is not worthy and not getting real value for the investment. They think that the IT
is so self-absorbed with their work and problems that they really do not get what the business is
trying to do. The VP, Cheryl OShea, and the COO Glen Vogel mentioned that the IT does not
know the basic functions of business and they cannot relate business needs with their technical
work, taking longer time to deliver any sort of technology. As a part of the higher-level
management, they believe that it is their responsibility to take the IT folks onto the field to make
them understand the business operations at all the Hefty stores (Slentz, 2013).
Shortcomings of Business
Lack of communication and collaboration with the IT people, business staff cannot
convey their concise and specific requirements to the IT department. In addition to this, they like
Glen and Paul in this case, crave IT people to accomplish some cross-functional jobs, which are
not their responsibilities at all.

HEFTY HARDWARE CASE STUDY

On the other hand, the IT views the field trip completely in a different way. The CIO,
Farzad Mohammed and chief architect, Sergei Grozny consider the whole idea of going onto the
field as Boondoggle, which shows that they are of the opinion that this would bring no value to
the work they do and a waste of time (McKeen & Smith, 2016).
Lastly, it seems as though there is bad time management and planning on the IT side.
Many projects do not go as planned, on schedule or on budget and this did raise a red flag in the
mini case. When the business department created a solution to the above issues by requesting
some IT staff come along with them to see how the IT and business can connect, there was a
huge issue on the IT side being able to allocate staff to go because they were behind schedule
(McKeen & Smith, 2016).
2. Create a written plan for how IT and the business can work collaboratively to deliver the
Savvy Store program successfully.
Savvy Stores think that going to the field would not help them much in understanding the
business. Instead, they are only focused on planning the strategic IT architecture for the Savvy
stores initiative and other high priority projects. In addition, they think that they can send the IT
folks onto the field once the planning and budget cycle are finished (McKeen & Smith, 2016).
Initially, I would totally encourage IT folks, not all the top architects though, to attend the
field trip. In this way, not only they could understand the specific business needs, but also they
can show an entire picture of how the store operation, which should be a vital part of the Savvy
Store program.
Then Jenny, who is an IT account manager, should act as a bridge between the IT
department and business department; try to balance sort of IT infrastructures and that business

HEFTY HARDWARE CASE STUDY

strategy to operate them effectively and efficiently. The VP, COO and CIO should have a regular
meeting to figure out a specific plan to replace people.
However, it would be of no use sending the IT people after the planning because things
need to be changed as early as possible in a project life cycle. The more delay in the changes, the
more complex and expensive the project would be (McKeen & Smith, 2016).
The business department should try to communicate appropriately and explain what they
expect from IT and link its value to the business model so that IT knows what is expected of
them and where they are strategically. It should involve right people in the organization who are
not only expert in technical skills but also understand the business perspective. T-shaped
professional who are not only experts in their discipline but also other disciplines should be
considered. On the other hand, IT department need to increase their knowledge on business and
its functions. IT folks need to understand the organizational goals and objectives, business
requirements, ideas and success factors. Rather than having a you-us attitude, developing we
kind of efforts would enhance their performance and lead to success of the organization
(McKeen & Smith, 2016).

HEFTY HARDWARE CASE STUDY

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References

McKeen, J. & Smith, H. (2012). IT Strategy: Issues and Practices (2nd ed.). Boston: Prentice
Hall. Kindle Edition.
Slentz. (2013). IT Policy and Strategy. (1st ed.). Wilmington University. Pearson Custom
Library.