What decisions must be made to ensure effective management and use of IT?
In the August 7th ITeffectivity Conversation I introduced the concept of IT Governance and its importance to the effective management of IT.
The IT Governance Framework can be applied to any institution. IT Governance can defined as the decision rights and accountability for assuring good behavior in our use of IT. It is a framework of decision rights and oversight that is intended to drive maximum value out of all information technology investments, minimize risks, use resources effectively, and assure alignment.
As outlined last time, the first step is identifying what decisions need to be made. Identifying what decisions need to be made will drive the organization to answer questions such as “How will we use IT to create value for the enterprise.”
The IT Governance Framework proposes that decisions be driven by answering the following six questions:
1. How will IT create Business value?
IT Guiding Principles - Clarifying the values and practices that IT operates against.
2. How much and where will we invest?
IT Portfolio Management - Collecting, evaluating and prioritizing which investments to fund and how much to spend on IT solutions, including project approvals, justification techniques, and benefit realization measurements methods.
3. What application or services do we need to delivery to enable business capabilities?
Business Applications/Service Requirements – Specifying the business need for purchased or internally developed IS applications and services.
4. How will we execute against the portfolio decisions?
IS Program Management - Collecting, evaluating and prioritizing the project requests which come to IS and deliver utilizing the defined project management lifecycle.
5. What technical guidelines and standards will we use?
IT Architecture Defining roles, responsibilities and relationships between IS components through policy and standardization; defining integration and standardization requirements.
6. How will we build and delivery shared services effectively and efficiently?
IT Infrastructure - Determine shared and enabling technology services and systems management processes, practices and policies.
These six key decisions are all related and require linking for effective governance.
Figure 1 arranges these decisions to reflect their critical interdependencies. For example, IT Principles drive the architecture that leads to the infrastructure design.
Stay tuned to the next conversation where we will discuss what will guide these decisions.
Conversations sponsored by ITeffectivity.com – an IT management consulting practice targeting CIO’s challenge of leading and delivering business solutions with a focus on effective people, process, and technology management.