Mar 282017

Is there a case for blockchain in your organization? Cutter Business Technology Journal contributing authors Steven Kursh and Arthur Schnure recently argued that companies should begin considering which parts of their organization might benefit from blockchain. Among their advice to CIOs and CTOs is to look for areas of friction when it comes to exchange of value or information that would benefit from a blockchain implementation and profit from a shared ledger system.

Write Kursh and Schnure, “Take a page from IBM, which announced in July 2016 that it plans to implement a solution to help its finance division resolve client and partner disputes. IBM believes the new system — one of the largest commercial rollouts of block­chain technology yet — will free up US $100 million in capital locked up in manual dispute resolutions. The company is beginning its journey to blockchain in a sector of its business where the benefits are real, yet the implementation is localized.”

“In the long run,” they continue, “blockchain technologies have the ability to enable cost savings, greater efficiency, more rapid transaction clearing, and greater cybersecurity. How­ever, the development and implementation costs at this stage are likely quite substantial. In addition, the greater energy requirements for a large-scale blockchain may be cost-prohibitive. Developing and implementing blockchain technologies in your organization will require resources and time. And as with most innovations, people and processes will need to change, potentially creating internal conflicts.

“Nevertheless, blockchain technology will inevitably move quickly in sectors such as finance, so companies large and small need to be prepared for what is coming. It’s a good idea to join an industry consortium that is exploring blockchain to learn and understand what’s happening in your particular sector.”

According to Kursh and Schnure, the best course of action for getting started with blockchain is to begin learning how it might change the different functions of your company. “Experimentation in non-mission-critical functions that can show real impact is recommended as a proof of concept.”

Curious About Blockchain?

Cutter Research: Cutter clients can read more from Steve Kursh and Arthur Schnure on this topic in the Cutter Business Technology Journal article, Fintech and Blockchain for Senior IT Managers.

And in Rapid Technology Innovation in Blockchain: Should You be on the Front Lines?, Nate O’Farrell states “Blockchain is here to stay, and while it will take some time to perfect as it becomes more mainstream, businesses should be asking, ‘Do we want to be on the front lines of in this area of technology innovation?’”

Bootcamp: Get your team immersed in the challenges and opportunities digital transformation presents at the Cutter Digital Transformation & Innovation Bootcamp. They’ll return with new ideas and strategies that have been vetted by other smart business leaders.


Anne Mullaney

Anne Mullaney oversees Cutter's marketing and product development activities and in-house editorial/research teams. She has more than 25 years experience in the high-tech publishing business.


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