IBM’s Mission Statement & Vision Statement (An Analysis)

IBM corporate vision statement, corporate mission statement, purpose, information technology business case study, analysis and recommendations
IBM 305 RAMAC. IBM’s corporate mission statement and corporate vision statement aim for leadership in the global information technology industry and markets for related products. (Photo: Public Domain)

IBM has a mission statement and vision statement strongly associated with the organization and its brand. A company’s corporate vision statement sets the desired future state of the business. IBM’s vision statement marks the importance of leadership in the information technology industry. On the other hand, the corporate mission statement defines business activity and related strategies. IBM’s mission statement emphasizes computing technologies and related services. These products compete with those of other large technology firms. For instance, the Five Forces analysis of IBM shows competition with Oracle, Cisco, Google (Alphabet), Amazon, Intel, and Microsoft. Also known as Big Blue, the company uses its corporate vision and mission statements in developing competitive advantages. The company applies its corporate mission and vision statements to influence employees, called IBMers, to embody excellence in their work.

IBM’s mission statement and vision statement are fundamental to the business. These corporate statements prompt solutions to challenges in the global information technology industry. The mission and vision influence business strengths and other organizational characteristics, as presented in the SWOT analysis of IBM.

IBM’s Mission Statement

IBM’s mission statement is “to lead in the creation, development and manufacture of the industry’s most advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, networking systems, storage devices and microelectronics. And our worldwide network of IBM solutions and services professionals translates these advanced technologies into business value for our customers. We translate these advanced technologies into value for our customers through our professional solutions, services and consulting businesses worldwide.” This mission statement shows what the business does and provides details on how to fulfill the business purpose and its goals. The following points are the main components of IBM’s mission statement:

  1. Leadership in information technologies
  2. Worldwide network for business value for customers
  3. Professional solutions, services, and consulting businesses

IBM’s corporate mission statement highlights leadership in the information technology industry. The details of the technologies linked to such leadership are included in the first component of the statement. To achieve this goal of leadership, IBM’s generic competitive strategy and intensive growth strategies promote business growth and competitiveness for dominance in the industry. In the second component, IBM’s mission statement specifies the people involved in creating value for customers. For example, the company creates value for customers through its worldwide network of solutions and professionals. On the other hand, the third component of IBM’s corporate mission presents the business activities involved in creating such value for target customers. The company’s professional solutions, services, and consulting businesses contain the mechanism for this value creation. This information makes IBM’s corporate mission statement specific in providing the bases for business processes. Moreover, the information is strongly linked to the company’s corporate vision statement, which also emphasizes leadership in the information technology industry.

IBM’s Vision Statement

IBM’s vision statement is “to be the world’s most successful and important information technology company. Successful in helping out customers apply technology to solve their problems. Successful in introducing this extraordinary technology to new customers. Important, because we will continue to be the basic resource of much of what is invested in this industry.” The following are the main components of IBM’s vision statement:

  1. World’s most successful and important IT company
  2. Helping customers apply technology to solve their problems
  3. Introducing extraordinary technology to new customers
  4. Continuing to be the basic resource in this industry

In the first component of the corporate vision statement, IBM’s focus is on the highest position in the information technology industry, in terms of success and importance of the business. The company aims to maintain its business within the information technology industry. The second component of IBM’s vision statement helps define the kind of success indicated in the first component. For example, the company states that such success is based on the ability of the business to help customers use technology to solve problems. In addition, the third component contributes to the definition of this success that IBM wants to achieve. For instance, such success is also based on the company’s ability to provide extraordinary technology to customers. Furthermore, the fourth component of the corporate vision defines what business importance means in the context of IBM. The company aims to be important by remaining as the basic resource in the industry. Thus, IBM’s corporate vision statement gives details about the nature of the business and what it can offer to the industry and the target market. This information is similar to the components of the company’s corporate mission statement.

An Assessment of IBM’s Corporate Mission & Corporate Vision

IBM’s mission statement is detailed, providing specifics of what the business does. For example, the company states that it is involved in the creation, development, and manufacture of information technologies. Also, the corporate mission includes information regarding IBM’s characteristics, such as the types of people involved in the business, as well as the organizational outputs offered to target customers in the global market. Based on such information, the company’s corporate mission statement is satisfactory in serving as a guide for strategic decision-making processes. However, it is recommended that IBM adjust the statement to account for changes in the organization, including the sale of some of the company’s businesses and the refocusing onto core competencies.

As one of the biggest technology firms in the global market, International Business Machines has a vision statement that states leadership in the information technology industry and market. The company’s corporate vision contains sufficient details about what such leadership means, in terms of success and importance. For example, the corporate statement links success and importance to being a basic resource in the industry. In this regard, IBM’s corporate vision statement is satisfactory and ideal. However, a recommendation is to enhance it by including recent, current, and potential changes in the business. This recommendation is based on IBM’s strategic repositioning and reform efforts, which include the divestiture of some of its businesses.