Strategic IT Planning and Governance

Info-Tech’s Step-By-Step Consulting Methodology G R O U
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Strategic IT Planning and Governance

Copyright © 2004 by Info-Tech Research Group All rights reserved. No part of this book may be produced or transmitted in any form by any means – graphic, electronic, or mechanical – without permission in writing from the publisher, except by a reviewer who may quote brief passages in a review. P Printed in Canada First edition: January 2004 Cataloguing in Publication Data Info-Tech Research Group, 2004Strategic IT Planning and Governance ISBN 0-9734751-0-2 To order please contact: Info-Tech Research Group 888-670-8889 519-432-3550 customerservice@infotech.com

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Strategic IT Planning and Governance Info-Tech’s Step-By-Step Consulting Methodology
G R O U I
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In the modern organization, Information Technology (IT) plays an increasingly important role in enabling all business processes. IT has become everybody’s business and the proper management of IT across the enterprise can substantially boost competitiveness. This step-bystep methodology will help you create the mechanisms for making IT decisions at the strategic level. Here are some examples of the kinds of questions that this methodology will help you answer: • How Do You Prioritize Big IT Projects? Large IT projects that impact the whole organization can be very expensive. Not only do organizations have to decide whether or not to green-light an expensive project, sometimes they have to choose between several big ticket projects all vying for the same scarce resources. This methodology provides a framework for these decisions. What Should Be Outsourced? Often outsourcing is seen too narrowly as an internal cost-cutting device, but outsourcing should enhance, rather than diminish, the effectiveness of enterprise information technology. Making outsourcing decisions in a strategic context will lead to smarter and more efficient IT. What Are Your Organizational IT Standards? With most or all of your departments using IT for competitive advantage, platform standards cannot simply be a case of what’s good for the IT department. Standards and procedures should be approved through an organizational governance process.

Info-Tech Research Group believes the top IT manager in the organization (whether he or she is a Chief Information Officer, Information Systems Manager, or Information Technology Manager) should play a lead role in the development of a plan for the strategic use of Information Technology. This guide is written from an IT management point of view. In eight concise stages, we show how IT managers can launch and manage a strategic IT process within their organizations. We also provide dozens of ready-to-use tools and templates to help you build this capability.

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com I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 4 .infotech. please feel free to contact us at: Info-Tech Research Group 602 Queens Avenue London. ON N6B 1Y8 Tel: 519-432-3550 Fax: 519-432-2506 Toll-Free: 888-670-8889 Or visit us online a www.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Contact Information Should you encounter any difficulties with this guide. or with the accompanying CD-ROM.

................................................................. 14 Scope.................... 47 Stage Summary ..................................... 17 How This Methodology Works: ..................................... 22 Step 2: Establish a Planning Group................................................ 30 Background > Making the Case for Strategic IT Planning............................ 21 Step 1: Set Strategic Planning Goals....................... 19 Stage 1> Plan the Plan ...................... 9 Aligning IT With Business Goals....................... 27 Step 4: Create a Preliminary Report................................................... 36 Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy.. 49 A Company’s Value Chain .............. 42 Step 2: Conduct an Industry Analysis................................................................................................ 43 Step 3: Document Vision........................................................... 25 Step 3: Hold a Kick-off Meeting ........ 16 The Agility Paradox...................... 48 Background > Analyzing Business Strategy ................ 39 Step 1: Describe the Company and Its Background... 33 More Notes on Agility................ 32 The Importance of Communication.............. 45 Step 5: Create a Financial Picture ...................................................................................................................................... 28 Stage Summary .................... Governance ........................................... and Core Values ..................................Table Of Contents Introduction.................................................... 35 Co-opting the Power User ....................................................................................................................................... Mission.................................................................................................................................................. 44 Step 4: Define Core Business and Its Boundaries ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 31 The Most Important Constituent: Senior Management ................. 51 C Page 5 I N F O ~ T E H R E S E A R C H G R O U P ................................................................................................................... ................................................... Competencies................ 46 Step 6: List Strategic Objectives................................................................... 15 The Importance of Governance ..................................... 49 The Supply Chain ......................

............................................................. ........ 62 Step 2: Document Your Hardware and Software Infrastructure....................................................... 63 Step 3: Audit Current IT Projects ............................................................................................ 91 Brainstorm of One (Brainwriting) ....... 69 Thoughts on Staffing Needs ............................................................................................................. 66 Stage Summary ..................... 59 Step 1: Document Your IT Organizational Infrastructure .......................... 86 Step 3: Document Your Results..................................................................................................... 64 Step 4: Understand the IT Environment ...................................................................................... 57 P Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation ............ 55 Key Success Factors ........................................................................................... 93 Step 1: Analyze Alignment Gaps............................... 79 Stage 4: Propose a New IT Situation .... 55 Identify Your Organization’s Core Competencies ........................................................................................................ 92 Stage 5: Perform a Gap Analysis ......................................................... 52 Porter’s Five Forces Model...................... 70 Rolling Out an Asset Management Initiative.........................Strategic IT Planning and Governance Industry Lifecycles .................................................................................................................................................... 71 Conducting a Hardware Asset Inventory ......................................... 68 Background > Mapping IT Assets..................................................................................................................... 75 Change Management .............................. 81 Step 1: Analyze IT Strengths and Weaknesses .................................................. 88 Stage Summary .......................... 54 Environmental Analysis (PEST). 69 Skills Development ...................................... 73 Conducting a Software Asset Inventory....... 90 Background > The Art of Brainstorming................... 70 Business Benefits of Asset Management .......................... 76 Asset Management Best Practices........................... 83 Step 2: Brainstorm Technology Opportunities .................... 95 Page 6 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 78 Understanding the IT Environment ..................................

........................................... 133 Stage 8: Publish................ 116 Step 3: Identify Your Options ........ 138 Page 7 Step 1: Hold a Vision Meeting With Stakeholders ... 111 Step 1: Set Strategic Goals and Measures .................................................. 124 Background > Types of Goals IT Should Set..................... 109 Stage 7: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework ........................................................................................................................................................................ 103 Stage Summary ................ 126 Technology Operations............................................. 135 Step 1: Build Your Strategic Plan Materials ................ 106 Building Your Steering Committee...... Promote............................... 120 Stage Summary ............................................................................................................................................... 101 Step 2: Establish a Strategic IT Vision................................................................ 105 Reigning In Rogue IT..................................................................... Maintain Your Strategy .................... 104 Background > One Vision for All........................................................................................... 98 Stage 6: Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model ..... 113 Step 2: Perform a Budget Analysis.................................... 132 N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U ...................................................................................................... 125 Organizational Goals .............. 125 Financial .......................................................................... 130 Getting Buy-In for Your Goals........................... 131 Using Your Budget as a Management Tool ................................ 129 IT Governance Goals.............................................................................................Step 2: Analyze Infrastructure Gaps........................................................................................................................................................................................... 99 P I Dealing with Budget Cuts ........................................................................................ 137 Step 2: Present Your Plan to Senior Management ............... 117 Step 4: Prioritize Your Projects ..... 102 Step 3: Propose a Governance Structure................................................................... 97 Stage Summary ............................................................................ 128 Customer Service Goals.................................................. 96 Step 3: Summarize and Resolve Gaps...........................

......... 143 Design the Roll-Out Plan ................ 146 P The Rollercoaster of Change.................................................................................. 149 Tips For Ongoing IT Strategic Governance .............................. 147 Adjusting Your Current Organizational Structure................. 152 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 8 .............................................................................................................. 150 Conclusion .............................................. 141 Background> A Guide to Killer Boardroom Presentations .................................................................................... 139 Stage Summary . 142 Guide to Developing a Communications Plan ..............................................................Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 3: Communicate and Manage Change .....................................................

leading to Planning process. a lack of understanding of. throughout the Strategic IT technology decisions. These tools are few opportunities to make your IT available as both individual files. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . on your CD ROM. templates that you will use for information gathering and analysis ü Reactive. and are compiled into a printable Workbook. the Methodology breaks into business strategy and IT’s role in the eight stages. which aligns well with your organization’s business strategy and lays the foundation for on-going strategic decision-making. This methodology has three components that will help guide you through this process: 1. The majority confirmed that strategic planning did have an impact on increasing competitiveness. Page 9 Why Strategic IT Planning? In a late 2002 survey. Info-Tech Research Group asked IT managers how much Strategic IT Planning impacted the overall competitiveness of their organizations. organization’s strategic planning process because of a lack of understanding of Specifically. ü Inconsistent systems purchases and 3. The guide also includes ü Increased risk of project failure due to helpful background articles. both on strategic goals and on a framework for making strategic decisions. rather than proactive. A report template upon which additional costs incurred as a result of you can build your Strategic IT unplanned purchases. you will build an IT strategy. Strategic planning is about building consensus. department a competitive weapon. This step-by-step guide takes you through the stages Here are some of the consequences of not having an of establishing an IT Steering established IT strategy: Committee and building a Strategic IT Plan. and proving IT is a strategic asset of the organization. This will be a living document subject to annual ü Limited participation of IT in the review and updating. of the stages listed below.Introduction Introduction Establishing a strategic planning process and governance model for Information Technology (IT) is critically important for making sound IT investment decisions. garnering support for IT projects. your organization’s overall business 2. The goal of this methodology is to provide you with an effective process for goal setting and decision making in IT that aligns with the business goals of your organization. or support to. Plan document. By following the steps in each organization’s future. A collection of tools and strategies.

“What is Strategic?” when it comes to IT projects. mission and core values. the steps that will be taken. but also in terms of past challenges that have been overcome. Put together a reasonably detailed description of your organization. • Step 1: Describe the Company and Its Background. background. as well as the theory contained in the background section. Document your organization’s mission and vision statements and list your core values. processes. A strategic planning process is also a crucial communications vehicle between IT and the rest of the organization. Analyze how your organization got to where it is today. the better the results. An open and inclusive process will lead to a better plan and increased understanding by all. Present this report to senior managers and get their sign-off. the time frame. to better understand your industry. Make sure you have the full support and cooperation of senior management before you proceed. Step 2: Establish a Planning Group. Work up a list of objectives for the strategic IT planning project. An analysis of the industries in which your organization operates will provide a deeper context to your current strategic mission and key objectives. and investments. In this stage you will analyze your organization. Include the overall goals. A truly open and effective process begins with a well-rounded working group. Start by answering the question. The better planned the process. Step 3: Document Vision. Look at your history in terms of dates and growth milestones. Mission. Can you describe your organization’s overall purpose? Step 2: Conduct an Industry Analysis. Review the steps of this methodology with the steering committee and set a preliminary time frame. it is a process. and any other preliminary cost estimates you have. • • C H • E S E A R R Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy You can’t hope to align your IT strategy with the business strategy of the organization if you can’t first demonstrate a clear understanding of that strategy. Step 3: Hold A Kick-Off Meeting. The culmination of your analysis should be a succinct set of well-defined corporate objectives. List all the major IT stakeholders in the enterprise. Your timetable should establish momentum and a sense of urgency. Select for your planning team a group that can work productively on building the plan and then on championing the results across the organization. Be aggressive but realistic with your deadlines. Put together a preliminary project description report.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage 1> Plan the Plan Strategic planning is not just a task. Use these analysis tools. • G R O U P Step 1: Set Strategic Planning Goals. Your organization mission statement should answer three equally important questions: Why do we exist? Whom do we serve? What do we produce? N F O ~ T E C H • I • Page 10 . Step 4: Create a Preliminary Report. and Core Values.

Creating an IT plan that only addresses your organization’s current needs has limited value in the long run. P • • Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Take a hard look at your current IT situation. What makes you special and different? Once you have defined your core business. • Step 1: Document Your IT Organizational Infrastructure. Look at industry trends and create competitor profiles. Step 5: Create a Financial Picture. Defining the projects currently being worked on by the IT department will help you understand whether IT is aligned with the overall goals of your business. This should include functional areas like network support. Examine your organization’s core competencies.Introduction • Step 4: Define Core Business and Its Boundaries. Analyze the trends in your industry and the actions of your competitors. and goal setting. and competitors are within those boundaries. Conduct an analysis of current strengths. • Step 1: Analyze IT Strengths and Weaknesses. Summarize your analysis in a succinct and forceful set of business objectives. Completing this section will help you identify the IT areas where the enterprise should focus investment. you are essentially operating in the dark and strategic planning will be a futile effort. Step 3: Audit Current IT Projects. determine what customers. Before plans can be made about the future of the IT organization. Without a firm understanding of your existing technology assets. These are the specific strategic objectives that you hope our IT strategy will align with. the current state must be understood. Page 11 . Review your current IT situation asking tough questions about performance. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Step 6: List Strategic Objectives. Identify and document your physical infrastructure. channels. alignment. Compare your current governance practice (if you have any) to an industry maturity model. • • • Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation World-class IT departments are forward-looking and proactive. Understanding the current workload and spending patterns is essential to planning for the future. weaknesses. This stage will help you envision the future of IT in your organization. Prepare an organizational chart of your IT department. Financial information is one of the few ways you can make a real ‘apples to apples’ comparison of your organization to the rest of the industry. and business analysts. You can’t manage what you don’t know you have. opportunities and threats (SWOT). programmers. Step 4: Understand the IT Environment. Gather up-to-date financial information of your organization. Step 2: Document Your Hardware and Software Infrastructure.

Similar to the core values you documented for your organization. Step 3: Propose a Governance Structure. • G R O U P Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis Compare your current IT situation to the proposed situation you developed in the previous stage. The IT Steering Committee is a cross functional committee for the on-going application of strategic priorities to all IT projects. Put together a summary of the gaps identified in both Step 1 and Step 2 and chart the implications for your IT strategy of addressing those gaps. Hold a brainstorming meeting (or meetings) involving your strategic planning group as well as IT staff. Describe what needs to be done to achieve the future IT situation documented in Stage 4. • Step 1: Hold a Vision Meeting With Stakeholders. Your IT core values represent the standard axioms by which IT is applied across the organization. Formulate a set of key questions to get the mental wheels turning. line managers. Step 3: Summarize and Resolve Gaps. Step 2: Analyze Infrastructure Gaps. power users.Strategic IT Planning and Governance • Step 2: Brainstorm Technology Opportunities. Propose a charter for this group that draws a line from vision and objectives to specific actions. Use diagrams and charts as much as possible and remember to continually relate your recommendations to the business goals of the enterprise. R C H S E A • • R E H Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model With a firm grasp of your organization’s business objectives and the ways that IT can enable them. Look at where current IT systems and skills sets do and do not fulfill those requirements. Review the results of “Stage 2: Document Your Business Strategy” and “Stage 3: Assess the Current IT Situation” in the context of the four quadrant strategic alignment model. Assess the IT requirements of the projects and areas of investment you identified in “Stage 4: Propose a New IT Situation”. Document your final recommendations for the future as approved by your planning group. senior managers. Use the guidelines for the organization vision statement in Stage 2 when preparing the vision statement for corporate IT. as a whole. The strategic IT vision applies to all strategic level IT decisions across the organization. • Step 1: Analyze Alignment Gaps. now is a good time to establish a top level vision and mission for your IT department. N F O ~ T E C • • I Page 12 . and special applications users. strategic IT core values are the set of beliefs or philosophies that guide strategic IT decisions. you will be able to create a roadmap for the future. Step 3: Document Your Results. By taking a detailed account of what you will need in the future and then matching it against your current infrastructure. Step 2: Establish a Strategic IT Vision.

it is still important to develop a communications plan to ensure that all stakeholders are fully aware of the plan’s contents and implications. the next step involves making some recommendations and determining a course of action. These include: 1. Step 4: Prioritize Your Projects. This takes the work you did in the previous stage – Set Your IT Strategy – and turns it into some actionable objectives for the upcoming year. Info-Tech Priority Index 3. the completed plan should not be a surprise to anybody. • Step 1: Build Your Strategic Plan Documentation. and a mechanism and governance model for making sound strategic priority decisions about IT into the future. a rational for prioritization of current IT projects. and Maintain Your Strategy The main deliverable of this process is a Strategic IT Plan that provides a specific vision and goals for IT in your organization. Present the plan to Senior Management and require its official approval. Use a three-tier approach to prioritizing your projects. Begin the process of turning your strategy into action by setting some clear goals for the IT department. Step 2: Present Your Plan to Senior Management. However. The last step is budgeting future performance levels. Step 2: Perform a Budget Analysis. Promote. If your planning process has been open and broadly based. Using your gap analysis from Section 6. Now that you have identified the gap between where you are and where you want to be. Info-Tech ROI Calculator • • • Stage 8> Publish. Begin identifying your options by taking a very high level approach. Goal setting and measurement are only two steps of the cycle. After you have gathered some actual information. Step 3: Communicate and Manage Change. Use the Strategic IT Plan template to bring together all of the elements you have created in this process into one concise plan that can be recommended to senior management. Step 3: Identify Your Options. Info-Tech Project Matrix 2. • • Page 13 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . group together functions that you think can be fulfilled by a type of application.Introduction Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Translate your strategy into some tactical and operational goals. Our Project Ranking Framework is designed to provide you with a robust prioritization process that ensures that your department’s projects are aligned with the objectives of the business. budgeting next year’s information becomes much easier. • Step 1: Set Strategic Goals and Measures.

Henderson and N. So. the IT/Business alignment model looks like this: I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A Each of the four quadrants of the business alignment model must integrate with the other quadrants.C. In a 1993 IBM Business Journal Article. IT/Business strategy alignment has been talked about in business studies for 20 years. or the functional requirements of other units in their quest to meet key business goals. for example. is a wasted resource. Vertical integration is called strategic fit. Each of these areas contains three interrelated subdomains. Graphically. R C H G R O U P The IT/Business Alignment Model contains four main interrelated domains. Venkatraman proposed a theoretical model for Strategic Alignment.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Aligning IT With Business Goals Strategic Planning and Alignment Info-Tech Research Group’s strategic planning survey found that the vast majority of organizations that did strategic planning saw an improvement in business/IT alignment. Page 14 . A number of management researchers have further refined the model and applied it to a range of industries. your information technology infrastructure needs to be accountable to both the overall strategic goals of IT (strategic fit) while also being able to help individual business units realize their individual strategic goals (functional integration). J. Any resource expended in an activity that does not advance either the strategic goals of the organization. horizontal integration is called functional integration. Pursuing alignment is an exercise in efficiency.

software. Infrastructure planning should focus on the following: • Structure: Priorities. Competencies. Governance: How authority and responsibility for decisions is shared between IT and business partners. governance. Governance An information technology strategic planning process needs to focus primarily on the Information Technology Strategy quadrant of the alignment model. networks. Processes: The procedures for managing IT infrastructure as well as practices for developing and maintaining applications. Plan Strategy and Infrastructure Concurrently P . Page 15 I N F O ~ T E It is strongly recommended that your infrastructure planning initiative be undertaken concurrently with your strategic planning. which is setting strategic priorities and represents the whole enterprise. • Your strategic IT plan also needs to integrate well with Business Strategy and Technology Infrastructure. Skills: Human resources practices and issues specific to building an effective IT department. policies and choices that bring together applications. and the IT department that must articulate the infrastructure requirements and the specific projects that will realize strategic goals. In an ideal situation. • • Think of it as a conversation between the steering committee. hardware and data management into a cohesive platform. However. in the event they are not. this methodology contains tools for roughing in some working definitions of your business and infrastructure strategies. your efforts will drive development in these important areas. Further information/discussion of If a well-articulated business plan and a technology the alignment model can be found infrastructure plan are in place or under development. The Information Technology Strategy quadrant includes: • • Systemic Competencies: Vital characteristics and strengths of information technology that provide advantages to the organization. Business strategy also focuses on scope. C H R Plan Strategy and Infrastructure Concurrently E S E A R C H G R O U Technology Scope: The key technologies that support the current business scope as well as the technologies that enable new opportunities.Introduction Scope. you will have concurrent plans in place or under development for both Business Plans and Technology Infrastructure. and core competencies as these apply to the whole enterprise. in the background section for Stage work on the Strategic IT Plan will be that much easier. How project priorities are established. In essence. 1: Plan the Plan.

In “An Holistic Approach to IT Governance”. prioritization. prioritization. Harvard Business School Professor Charles Popper notes that formal decision making “helps to ensure that critical decisions are fully committed to by all groups in the enterprise. Establish procedures for prioritizing IT projects that are understood and supported by all senior managers. The business world at the turn of the millennium is too dynamic for a strategy to be implemented by remote control. decision making and performance measurement. By having these formal processes and structures – such as IT strategy and steering groups – the organization can better: • P G R O U • • Align IT strategy with the business strategy Transform high level strategic goals into actual IT projects. analyze. While being as flexible as possible. By “high level” we mean that these processes and structures extend beyond managing the IT department to address strategic IT issues across the entire enterprise. if necessary. 2.Strategic IT Planning and Governance The Importance of Governance The term “IT Governance” refers to formal high level processes and structures for IT strategic planning. Agreed-on processes need to be developed to identify the decisions to be made. through a dedicated IT steering committee. Senior managers need to be involved on a regular basis. and disseminate the data needed for informed decisions. to collect. Senior managers will need to accept formal responsibility for strategic decisions regarding information technology. through an existing management committee or. As they impact the entire organization they demand wider involvement and particularly the participation and support of senior management. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 16 . decision making and performance measurement. and to make and communicate the decisions. it is still important to establish agreed upon processes and structures for strategic planning. 3.” Processes to do this have three main principles: 1.

G R O U P The Agility Paradox The faster things change. Not the Plan Start with the following proposition: It’s not about the plan. Yet the faster things change.Introduction Methodology Overview Spreadsheet This spreadsheet. the greater the need for strategic direction. Every step should be completed as part of this process. This is the agility paradox. Planning. however. You can take the first steps towards greater agility by developing a more flexible strategic planning process for your organization. You can work toward the goal of making planning more agile by shifting your strategic focus from simply creating a plan to implementing an iterative. will help you assess the amount of work that needs to be done to complete this methodology. Completing the stages of this methodology leads to the establishment of a strategic IT planning and governance practice as well as a written strategic plan. Page 17 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H . you may have already completed much of this work as part of other projects. real-time process of alignment and execution. In these cases you can check off the steps as done and significantly reduce the estimated hours it will take to complete your objectives. the harder it is to develop a strategic plan. located on the CD-ROM.

and the extrapolation of historical data. Faster business cycles. and planners are forced to wait until the next planning cycle to react. They depend on predictable future outcomes. and ultimately create opportunities for ongoing competitive advantage. and too reactionary.” the traditional models for preparing an annual strategic planning document are too slow. windows of competitive advantage have already been lost. In addition to the formal processes laid out in this document. A McKinsey report involving 80 companies characterized the annual strategic process as. Traditional plans are often out-of-date before they are even fully conceived. E S T E Agility Tips Each step in this methodology is necessary for the creation of a workable strategic governance practice. “ritualized. to the point where change is constant. and expanding fields of competition. Shortcomings of Traditional Strategic Planning P G R O U Often referred to as “dog-and-pony shows. The need for an agile strategic planning process is real. By this point. stagnant annual document. linear forecasting. politicized.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Instead of thinking of your strategic plan as a reactive. the threat of external change is much greater. rapidly advancing technologies. Developing such an agile strategic planning process will foster constant learning. and of little value.” • • • Traditional models focus more on the bottom line and on making quarterly numbers than on innovation and real-time response to the market. I N F O ~ Page 18 . evolving entity that is in a state of perpetual change based on changes to the business environment. too rigid. think of it as a proactive. thus failing to anticipate change. give you the ability to adapt in real-time. E A R C H C H R The moments of stability normally experienced between cycles of change have become shorter and shorter. we add “agility tips” – suggestions on how you might achieve each stage in a more informal and timely fashion.

• Page 19 . Each Stage in the methodology is broken down into Steps. we strongly recommend using the electronic version provided on the CD-ROM. Contents of the CD-ROM are designed for use on PC platforms using Microsoft Office software (Microsoft Word. Reading these objectives will help you nail down the purpose of each step and will give you direction. and PowerPoint format. • Background Sections: These sections should be viewed as optional reading . and to be used in lieu of reading from a computer screen. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U For each stage there are also corresponding Workbook sections as well as Background sections that provide further information on the subject of the stage. These sections are the “meat” of this methodology and will guide you through the process in an easy-to-follow. All workbook documents are in Microsoft Word. Excel and PowerPoint viewers are available on the CD-ROM in the “Viewers” folder for accessing files without Office software). which include the following sections: • • Objectives: Each step has objectives. Workbook documents can be accessed from the electronic version of the methodology through the hyperlinks within specific action steps. You have been provided with a hard copy of the methodology and background sections.Introduction How This Methodology Works Below is a brief explanation of how the methodology is laid out.if you are not comfortable with your knowledge level of the topic at hand. If the CD-ROM does not install automatically. Many workbook articles are drawn from Info-Tech advisory publications and have their own mini-action plans. use the related background information to quickly get you up to speed. Workbook Sections: These sections help you complete the action steps and gather documentation for a final report. step-by-step approach. and what you can expect to encounter in each section. you can access the contents by exploring your CD-ROM drive. The hard copy is intended as a quick reference. The electronic version will save you time in completing most stages and makes it easier to make changes during the process. What You Need to Do: This section contains the action steps that you need to take in order to complete the objectives. Excel. In undertaking the steps of this methodology.

This terminology was used purely for consistency and to facilitate reading ease. the electronic version will automatically load and install itself onto your hard drive.Strategic IT Planning and Governance When you insert the CD into your computer. Please Note: While we refer to the business or company. this methodology is equally applicable to any type of for-profit. nonprofit. We strongly recommend that you create a Strategic IT Planning folder on a backed-up network drive and save all of your work there. An icon will be created on your desktop for easy access. Please note that all of the workbook files and interactive tools will be saved by default to their original location on your hard drive. or government organization. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 20 . and in many cases relate stages or steps to business situations.

Your timetable should establish momentum and a sense of urgency. The better planned the process. You and your committee will review the steps of this methodology and determine what will need to be done specific to your circumstances and establish when each stage should be completed. and closer alignment of corporate and IT strategy. when and why of your strategic planning process. Step 3 – Hold a Kick-off Meeting Review the steps of this methodology with the team and set a preliminary time frame. Work up a list of objectives for the strategic IT planning project. “What is Strategic?” when it comes to IT projects. Select for your planning team a group that can work productively on building the plan and then on championing the results across the organization. Stage In this stage you will establish the who. the better the results. Identify areas where key steps have already been taken as well as areas that will require more work. A strategic planning process is also a crucial communications vehicle between IT and the rest of the organization. • • You will establish who the stakeholders are in your strategic IT plan and establish a planning committee to include those stakeholders in the process. It is a process. Page 21 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A • R C H G R O U Strategic planning is not just a task. processes. and investments. The answer to this question will help set the scope for the Strategic IT Plan. what. Step 2 – Establish a Planning Group List all the major IT stakeholders in the enterprise. Step 1 – Set Strategic Planning Goals Start by answering the question. Be aggressive but realistic with your deadlines. 1 P . Approval of this report will constitute a why green light for the entire process to commence. An open and inclusive process will lead to a better plan. A truly open and effective process begins with a well-rounded working group. Finally you will complete a preliminary report for senior management that outlines the scope and the goals of the plan (the why). increased understanding by all.Stage 1> Plan the Plan Stage 1> Plan the Plan Every moment spent planning saves three to four in execution.

......................................................................................................................................................................................................9 Timeline Tool ......... 14 1................................................3 Planning Constraints ...........................5 Stakeholder Analysis Tool ......................... 31 The Most Important Constituent: Senior Management............................... 23 1............. Present this report to senior managers and get their sign-off.................. 25 1...................................1 Scope Statement Worksheet..... the steps that will be taken....7 Kick-off Meeting Agenda ..........................4 Identify Stakeholders ............................................................................................................... 26 I N F O ~ T E C Page 22 ....... 21 1................................... 28 Stage Summary............ Put together a preliminary project description report... P G R O U In This Stage Stage 1 > Plan the Plan............ 24 1................................................................ Include the overall goals...............10 Project Definition Statement .................... 35 Co-opting the Power User ..................................... and any other preliminary cost estimates you have.................................... the time frame.. 7 1.................. 23 Step 2 – Establish a Planning Group.....................................................................................Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 4 – Create a Preliminary Report Make sure you have the full support and cooperation of senior management before you proceed........................... 32 The Importance of Communication ........................................................................................................................................................................... 36 H R E S E A R C H Workbook Stage 1 > Plan the Plan.2 Project Goal Statement ....................... 15 1... 11 1..6 Letter to Key Stakeholders ............................ 25 Step 3 – Hold a Kick Off Meeting .......................... 9 1......... 21 Step 1 – Set Strategic Planning Goals ......8 Convergence of Technology and Core Business Strategy .............................................................. 12 1................................... 33 More Notes on Agility .... 27 Step 4 – Create a Preliminary Report................................................................................. 30 Background > Making the Case for Strategic IT Planning......................

We recommend it. Rather than formal meetings with formal agendas. Two critical issues require your attention in this first stage: establishing lines of communication and agreeing on a reasonable scope for this effort. Establish strategic planning goals. The important thing is that you continue to drive the process while keeping key stakeholders in the loop. It is good to start by defining the kind of IT investments and activities your strategic planning effort will address.” Page 23 I N F ü Outline the purpose of the plan. What is strategic? Use “1. you still need to establish some kind of planning circle. However.2 Project Goal Statement” to draft the primary reasons for developing a strategic plan. What You Need To Do ü Identify (and plan to mitigate) possible constraints. Think about the constraints you will encounter in implementing the plan. Holding a kick-off meeting is a great way to focus everybody’s attention. State the purpose(s) of the Strategic IT Planning process. start by defining boundaries.Stage 1> Plan the Plan Agility Tip: Have a Plan for the Plan Every minute spent planning saves three minutes in execution. • • • Establish the scope of your Strategic IT Plan. Don’t try to go it alone. if your organization is small or averse to large formal meetings. T E C H R E S E Objectives: A Step 1 – Set Strategic Planning Goals R C H G R O U P .1 Scope Statement Worksheet” to help formulate a scope. In most simple terms. Why are you preparing an IT planning document for your enterprise? What are the primary reasons you are undertaking this process and what do you hope to achieve? One example might be “To align the IT organization with the business strategy of the North American operations.3 Planning Constraints” to list these constraints and how they might be avoided.” Another example is “To identify technology-related projects that provide our organization with the highest return on investment. you might instead try to schedule regular lunches or coffee break meetings with key stakeholders. O ~ ü Create a Scope Statement. Review possible constraints and steps to mitigate those constraints. Use the worksheet “1. Use the worksheet “1.

consider something as simple as upgrading a PC operating system. Give some thought to what kinds of projects occupy this space. Then think about what steps might be taken to mitigate those constraints. not to mention the cost. affect everybody. However. there are certain IT projects that are beyond the scope of the functional duties of the IT department. T E C H R E S E • O ~ I N F • As an example. Any such standard should have demonstrable impact on moving the enterprise toward its goals. standards implications. Think about the constraints you will encounter in order to implement your plan. you may have difficulty scheduling time with all of the stakeholders. Page 24 . to make it a strategic project. and cost to warrant being considered strategically. For example. An enterprise-wide operating system upgrade does have the scope and impact. which does not advance the strategic goals of the organization. Successful implementation of any plan relies on a number of factors that are outside of your control. However. Info-Tech Research Group suggests that you look at projects that might be strategic from three perspectives: • Reach and Impact: Who is affected directly and immediately by a proposed project? Will it involve the participation of more than one department? What proportion of IT users across the organization will be impacted? Standards: Any action that sets or impacts an Information Technology Standard for the entire enterprise will. A project to upgrade every PC to Windows XP would certainly have the reach and impact. A goal such as “Make the IT department better at serving our customers” is a laudable departmental goal. Your Strategic IT Plan should be about establishing how information technology will make the enterprise more effective and competitive. Cost: It may seem crass to identify a project as strategic simply because of its price tag. then it may be necessary for the company to standardize on Windows XP. In this case the project should be analyzed and approved within a strategic context. Upgrading one PC isn’t strategic. but it is more functional rather than Strategic. P R C H G R O U A What Is Strategic? It will be noted later in this methodology that an IT governance structure is not a replacement for the IT manager.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Keep the focus of your goals externally oriented and speak to the enterprise as a whole. Alternatively. you may face resistance from senior management who do not see the need for a strategic plan for the IT department. the reality is that there are numerous internal agendas. List the major constraints in the project constraints worksheet. should be suspect. by definition. but another way to look at it is that any project that carries a price over a certain amount. if IT has historically served in a support capacity at your organization. Identifying Constraints As much as we would all like to believe that everybody in an organization is headed in the same direction. if a new Web services based content management system requires Office XP running on Windows XP.

Stage 1> Plan the Plan

Step 2 – Establish a Planning Group
Objective: • Identify and contact the key stakeholders who can participate in the strategic process. What You Need To Do G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R Creating your steering committee is the most crucial part of this stage of the strategic planning process. The steering committee will be the basis for both drafting a strategic plan and for long term IT strategic governance in your enterprise. A steering committee will help perform two important roles for the management of an organization’s IT direction: • • Alignment. The committee helps ensure that IT strategy is aligned with the strategic goals of the organization. Ownership. IT enables all functional units within the organization. These units have to play a role in larger IT strategic decisions since those decisions will impact their processes. Consider the alignment model sketched in the introduction to this methodology. Other department managers and key executive decision makers are going to have to be in the loop if you are going to build both strategic fit and functional integration across the organization. The steering committee will help you develop a strategic vision for IT in the organization. They will also act as an on-going review body that will help you judge the strategic merit of IT projects and investments. As IT has enterprise-wide implications, it makes sense that you should involve constituents of the enterprise outside of IT in strategic planning. It is also important, however, to remember the following: • A steering committee is not a clearinghouse for functional demands of the various units in your organization. This is not the place for finance to complain about bugs in their new system or for personnel to note inefficiencies in the help desk. A steering committee is not a replacement for the IT manager, or management team of the IT department. The IT manager manages his or her department. The •
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ü Identify stakeholders. Use the worksheet “1.4 Identify Stakeholders” to create a preliminary list of people who you may want on your steering committee, or those that you will enlist as ‘champions’, in order to implement your strategic plan. ü Think carefully about this list. Your list should consist not only of management above you, but also of your peers and subordinates. Use worksheet “1.5 Stakeholder Analysis Tool” to further refine your list. ü Invite key stakeholders to join the steering committee. The Strategic IT steering committee will be the primary planning body for Strategic IT. This group will participate in the creation of the strategic plan, and will be the basis for a permanent governance group.

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steering committee helps set priorities for IT investment and evaluates how well the entire organization is progressing in meeting strategic goals. • The steering committee is not a “rubber stamp” for the IT department. The committee must be able to gauge the business impact of various proposed IT projects. They are not there simply to communicate the latest decision by the IT managers. They must have the power to say another project has higher priority.

Agility Tip: The Perils of Going It Alone
What if your organization or department is small and culturally averse to the idea of a formal committee? At the very least build an informal network of contacts, keeping stakeholders and senior decision makers in the loop about the planning process. Whether it is a ten-person committee or a couple of decision makers with whom you regularly have coffee, open communication and stakeholder involvement is the key. Meetings, communication, consensus building: These are all time consuming tasks. Wouldn’t it be easier just to take this methodology into your office, work through the steps, and present a finished strategic plan to your CEO? You can go it alone with this methodology, but the resulting plan will be more likely to sit on a shelf and never really impact management decision making. Wider involvement in planning guarantees better and more lasting results as more people will have a stake in the outcome.

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Step 3 – Hold a Kick-off Meeting
Objectives: • • Bring together your steering committee to formally launch the project. Refine goals and establish an initial timeline for the project. What You Need To Do ü Use the “1.6 Letter to Key Stakeholders” template to make initial contact with your proposed steering committee members. Outline the goals and expectations of the planning project. ü Use “1.7 Kick-off Meeting Agenda” as a basis for your meeting. Discuss the goals and possible constraints that you have outlined with the steering committee and if necessary, revise goals and expectations based on their input. ü Use “1.8 Convergence of Technology and Core Business Strategy” PowerPoint presentation to help explain the importance of IT/Business alignment and establishing IT governance. ü Use “1.9 Timeline Tool” to establish a preliminary timeline for the Strategic IT Planning project. Estimate an approximate time for each of the stages in this methodology. The kick-off meeting is an excellent opportunity to introduce your steering committee members to each other and to the project. Review the goals and possible constraints that you have already identified. Use this meeting to set a clear understanding of the importance of the project as well as the importance of the committee. • The project kick-off meeting should run no more than a couple of hours. You don’t want to make the group think that the project is nothing but a series of long meetings. If you can have the President or CEO kick-off the meeting with some encouraging words, it would be a great shot in the arm to the project. Introduce the members of the team to each other. Depending on the size of your organization, some members may not know each other. Discuss responsibilities of the team. Explain that this is an enterprise-wide IT plan and the input of the entire steering group will be critical. Share your preliminary goals and discuss possible constraints with the team. Be willing to listen to concerns and ideas. Make sure you encourage feedback from the team. Finally, review the steps of the plan and put a rough timeline together. Better to be up front with the group and let them know that this isn’t a ‘back burner’ project. Make sure the group understands how the project will be tracked and what the status update routines will be. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S • • • • •
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E S E A R C H G R O U P Step 4 – Create a Preliminary Report Objectives: • • • • Document the purpose of the Strategic IT Planning and Governance Project. Keep your timelines aggressive but realistic: One of the biggest obstacles to creating and implementing a successful strategic plan is managing the energy and enthusiasm of the people involved over time. However. Try to stick to your dates as much as possible. ü Garner top level support. Gather top-level support. you will have trouble sustaining enthusiasm. In this step you will review and consolidate the content created in the first three steps of the Plan the Plan stage into one consolidated report that you can take to senior management for approval. What You Need To Do ü Use the template “1. At the outset. as time goes on. you will do the following: Page 28 I N F O ~ T E C H R . you and your steering committee’s energy will wane. you will likely have no shortage of energy to put into creating the plan. This is your opportunity to streamline the process: Although the best IT plans include all of the stages in this methodology. and the likelihood of creating a successful plan will diminish significantly. ask “Has this been done already?” and “Do we already have this information?” For example. or you keep missing deadlines. If your organization has recently completed a Strategic Plan. in Stage 2 you will be documenting your organization’s strategic vision and business direction.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Creating the Timetable Review the steps in this methodology with your team and establish a completion date for each step in the strategic planning process. For each stage of the process. Make sure your report is understood and approved by senior management. Set a timeline for the project. Identify possible project constraints and limitations and mitigation options.10 Project Definition Statement” to bring forward information from all the steps in this stage into a preliminary report. In your project definition statement. If this exercise takes too long. this documentation probably already exists and the time required to complete this stage will be drastically reduced. the information gathering involved can be very time-consuming work.

Using your completed worksheet “1. Successful implementation of any plan relies on a number of factors that are outside of your control. Either way their support and endorsement is essential when trying to re-deploy resources to your project and soliciting help from organization employees. Use the “1.3 Planning Constraints” list any constraints. limitations. These dates may be adjusted later. and solicit their feedback. constraints. however setting some general targets now is a good start. List the primary reasons that the organization is undertaking this process and what it hopes to achieve.9 Timeline Tool” to lay out a preliminary timeline for the project. The CEO and other top-level management should be involved in this project either directly or through a representative on your planning committee. Gather top-level support for the project. Use the various stages outlined in this methodology as macro-level milestones and establish completion dates for each stage. State the purposes of the Strategic Planning project in the Project Definition Statement. as well as possible solutions within the Project Definition Statement workbook. timeline and budget. or obstacles that you can think of. Set a timeline.Stage 1> Plan the Plan • Begin with the purpose of the plan. sit down with some of the brass and get their take on the project. This can be an informal meeting – if you can. • • • Page 29 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P .2 Project Goal Statement.” Include the constraints you have identified. Use your revised goal statements from worksheet “1. Show them your definition statement.

You should now have a planning group with a strong and shared sense of mission. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. In the next stage you will lead this group through a critical information-gathering exercise. The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 1 of the engagement. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 30 . a clear picture of the current business mission and goals needs to be drawn. P G R O U Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Plan the Plan Time spent planning saves time in execution. In order to align IT with the business.

but perhaps less likely.Stage 1> Plan the Plan Background > Making the Case for Strategic IT Planning P I Assuming that the image at left above comes closest to describing your situation. In this case the alignment model is entirely weighted toward functional integration. Page 31 In the pre-planning stage it is critical that you make the case for strategic planning of enterprise IT investment. In this case the IT department’s agenda is very much influenced by the functional requirements of the individual departments who are each striving to fit their individual plans with the overall strategy. For example. thinking strategically about IT may be a new concept. IT alignment in actual companies can be quite different than what is modeled here. there is a balance between Functional Integration and Strategic Fit. You could have an organization where IT is always seen as a strategic driver and individual business units are left to fend for themselves. In this case it is IT strategy that is the pivot between the business strategy anchor and the IT infrastructure impact. make the case that a wellthought-out IT strategy can make your enterprise more competitive and profitable. Consider the four-quadrant IT/ Business alignment model that was presented in the introduction to this methodology. In many organizations. In an ideally aligned IT organization. the business infrastructure is the pivot and IT is the impact domain. but IT has never been looked at strategically. In short. to go too far in the other direction. It is also possible. an organization could have a strategic plan. In Strategic Alignment parlance. The IT department is integrated with both the Business Infrastructure and an overall Technology Strategy that is aligned with the Business Strategy. the business strategy is the anchor. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U . This is because IT is more often seen as a functional enabler of business processes. what is the motivation for changing this relationship? You need to make the case that balancing functional requirements with IT Strategy will benefit your organization.

T. it is really worth asking whether or not you should proceed. Consider these trends from A. In fact. they have not balanced these efforts with efficiencies and are not getting enough bang for their buck. if you don’t have upfront buy-in and support. Increased Ability to Obtain Funding: 73% of organizations utilizing SITP reported an increased ability to obtain funding for new IT initiatives. Big IT Spenders. Use the following points from the survey in bolstering you case: • Increased Competitiveness: 65% of organizations utilizing SITP reported that their entire organization was at least somewhat more competitive due to utilization of SITP.Strategic IT Planning and Governance In late 2002 Info-Tech Research Group surveyed IT managers about Strategic IT Planning (SITP). In 1998 a research report from McKinsey Group argued that most companies fall within four categories in terms of their use of Information Technology. 1998: 55% of CEOs were devoting 22% of their time toward trying to keep abreast of technologies that would affect their business. IT Laggards. 1. These are companies that have tried to stay ahead of the curve with large IT expenditures. Improved IT/Business Objectives Alignment: 94% of respondents utilizing SITP reported having improved the alignment between their IT objectives and those of the organization as a whole. Unfortunately. G R O U P • ü C H • Increased Executive Support of IT Strategy: 80% of respondents utilizing SITP versus 67% of respondents not using SITP reported that IT strategy was of high or moderate importance to senior management in their organization. Kearney. 2000: Technology is not only viewed as part of the strategic business process. Page 32 I N F O . 2. 15% indicated that utilizing SITP has significantly increased their organizations’ competitiveness. From Enabler to Strategic Investment The purpose of IT has shifted from enabling the organization to actually delivering value to the customer. Almost half of the companies studied by Mckinsey fell into this category. but is considered a fundamental key driver. ü ü 1996: 50% of CEOs felt that technology decisions influence overall business strategy. Better Project Tracking and Budgeting: Organizations utilizing SITP were more likely to finish their projects on time and on budget than those organizations not utilizing this practice E A R R E S • • T E C H ~ The Most Important Constituent: Senior Management Senior management involvement (CEO and senior managers) in the strategic IT planning process is absolutely critical. Were slow to use new technologies either efficiently or effectively in support of core business process.

They have successfully balanced effectiveness and efficiency. The survey resulted in the following table of enablers and inhibitors. If you and your non-IT masters and colleagues plan together. top managers devoted 45 hours. and share the same vision. Cautious IT Spenders. use a common vocabulary. p 138. Enablers Senior executive support for IT IT involved in strategy development IT understands the business Business . These companies are a minority (27%). These are companies that focus on efficiency of functional IT but fail to think about how IT can have a strategic impact. It is really all about communication.) The Importance of Communication A 1999 study of “Enablers and Inhibitors of Business-IT Alignment for the Association for Information Systems” surveyed hundreds of IT executives and business executives. They spend less than the big spenders. They found that top management at IT laggards spent 20 hours per month focused on IT. IT Stars.Stage 1> Plan the Plan 3.IT partnership Well-prioritized IT projects IT demonstrates leadership Inhibitors IT/business lack close relationships IT does not prioritize well IT fails to meet its commitments IT does not understand business Senior executives do not support IT IT management lacks leadership An interesting observation of the study was that the enablers and inhibitors were seen as two sides of the same coin. At IT stars.” (“Manufacturing Use and Abuse of IT”. Page 33 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . At IT stars. the researchers found. 1998 issue 1. McKinsey Quarterly. 4. the McKinsey researchers posited “seven highly effective habits” for IT in companies. In their prescription for how IT Laggards can become IT Stars. but the expenditures they make have a greater return. and get actively involved in introduction of new systems. The very first of these habits is “IT must be a top management affair”. alignment follows. “top managers devote time and energy to developing an IT strategy.

You should “treasure what you measure” because it sends an important message to everyone that not only is the outcome important. Research shows that the better aligned the business and IT strategy. but it’s important enough that you need to set goals and monitor progress towards them. 1. 3. while only 28% reacted favorably to the title “strategic consultant”. storage). Communicate Clearly through policies.g. Page 34 . Some can be difficult to justify in isolation (e. In the same year Balanced Scorecard Magazine and CIO Magazine co-sponsored a survey of 500 IT and business executives. and only a third thought their IT strategic priorities were well linked to business strategy. 4. security. This committee should make sure that IT planning and strategic planning are linked. the better the potential for positive return for the enterprise. service level agreements. letting customers serve themselves online).Strategic IT Planning and Governance Here are four suggested actions for enhancing alignment in your organization.g. Almost half of respondents didn’t think their organization had done a good job making strategic goals clear to all employees. Measure Every Important IT and Business Outcome (e.g. $1 million in new sales in six months after completing the e-commerce project). and profits). Build Governance Procedures and Structures that involve the broader management team in IT investment decisions. but can be justified as part of a broader business objective (e. and project charters to ensure on-going understanding of both the functional and strategic role of IT and IT investments. META group reported that alignment had been among the top five concerns of IT executives over the previous five years (number one ranked in 2002). Business and IT metrics should also be linked (e. budgets. Yet. 2. procedures. in spite of this fact – and the fact that the idea of alignment has been around for 20 years – alignment is still elusive in many companies. sales. has been a failure? A more realistic reading is that perfect alignment is more theory than reality: it is an ideal that motivates on-going efforts. rather than technical terms. All four are addressed in this methodology. Learn the Language of Business: The benefits of any IT project must be expressed in business. project completion dates. 47% saw IT’s role as “reactive problem solver”. Among the findings: • • • While most respondents (58%) said there are general efforts to link IT spending with strategy. Prepare a business case for each significant technology investment.g. such as strategic planning and governance. as an idea. only 10 percent said spending was “explicitly based” on strategic plans. P S E A R C H G R O U Easier Said Than Done In 2002. business continuity. Such a governance body is usually called a “Steering Committee” though other terms like “IT Investment Committee” can also be used. I N F O ~ T E C H R E Does this mean that alignment.

Outline a focused. Consider the following implications for IT: • Open architecture needs to be a working reality. as opposed to writing an annual strategic IT planning document. A process must be created to manage workflow – providing access to information for those who need it. Design the strategy and plan for changes to the corporate infrastructure. and business partners? The largest hurdle in adopting a flexible. Information assets need to be made readily available and reusable to all authorized users while maintaining a high level of security. Set guidelines for the real-time creation of new options in the event that unforeseen scenarios transpire. Consider this food for thought as you build your strategic practice. identify the factors that could change the business environment in the future and prepare multiple scenarios to anticipate threats and opportunities more accurately. The success/failure of your strategy should be measured in real-time as the implementation occurs. 1. Envision the strategy.Stage 1> Plan the Plan More Notes on Agility Focusing on an open on-going strategic process. Overall. The IT investment policy must change from simply endorsing planned replacements to a model of continuous adaptation based on business needs. capable of maximum flexibility. customers. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P • • • • 4. Here are some additional tips on building agility from the McLean Report article “An Agile Strategy for A Dynamic World”. the entire technology infrastructure must evolve into a set of standards-based services. As a starting point for your agile strategy. there must be corporate initiatives in place that cultivate a change-tolerant and flexible culture. 2. Since agility is an initiative that will affect the entire company. 3. long-term strategy based on the scenarios most likely to occur. Consider the entire value chain – how will these initiatives affect your suppliers. you will also need to gather stakeholders from various departments and functional units. Strategic decisions to outsource or in-source should be supported by flexible systems capable of change. Because IT strategic planning is closely tied to corporate planning. is the key to keeping your strategic planning agile. While individual technologies and applications may change based on strategic objectives. and restricting access from those who don’t. and develop high-level strategic options for other likely scenarios. this initiative must be backed by senior management. Ensure that the strategy you envisioned is tactically possible given the various scenarios. Business and IT processes need to be developed and resources deployed to gather real-time performance measurements during the execution phase. Gather corporate and departmental support. agile strategy will likely be your IT infrastructure. Execute the strategy and gather feedback. If feedback indicates that Page 35 .

This is the crux of the real-time strategy. O ~ T E C H R E S E A R I N F • • • Page 36 . Bob is respected in his department because of his above average understanding and use of information technology. that Bob and Alice could have some great ideas with genuine business value. Infusing these with real-time feedback of environmental and competitive changes as they occur will prevent companies from wasting time on outdated initiatives. Check help desk logs to see how often the power users on your list have used your services. Skeptical business unit executives should be easy to find since many of them come to executive meetings and make their skepticism known. It’s also true. Bob doesn’t like the direction your IT department is taking. however. H G R O U P C Co-opting the Power User There is a power user in your organization. Allow for the introduction of new ideas and innovations mid-planning cycle and respond to new opportunities and threats as they occur. If he or she is not using your services. then these should be modified. take this as a sign that they do not have adequate confidence in your ability to support them. Bob doesn’t like you. the strategic planning process should be less time-consuming. Help the skeptic become the local expert in new tools and services you plan to introduce. evaluation of strategic effectiveness should be occurring on an on-going basis. 5. The Bobs and Alices of your organization could undermine your credibility and frustrate your plans. Maintain a continuous process for strategic development. is a bit harder to track down. Invite potential power user skeptics to meet with you to discuss IT directions. The skeptic may be flattered by your request and more open to dialogue. ideas. Involve them further by tapping them during fact-finding phases of planning for new projects. however. Instead of an annual analysis of the strategy. and market influences for later reference during the on-going strategic planning process. Once the process is in place.Strategic IT Planning and Governance there are holes in the design or vision of the strategy. Maybe he just wants a little respect for his opinions from the IT decision makers. The skeptical end-user. He is openly critical of IT with other users. Let’s call him Bob (or Alice will also do). This will help them protect their leadership status among their peers and ease any feelings of threat they may have. initiatives. Why? Maybe your department refused his request for non-supported technology without explaining why or offering an alternative. More precisely. • Preparation and execution are lengthy processes. Document all changes. Maybe the help desk failed to answer his sophisticated queries. How? • Ask department heads and your own IT support groups to give you the names of the power users in various units. as changes will be incremental and less drastic. and is the most difficult to implement. Your job is to understand these skeptics and make them your allies.

Page 37 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . Keep in mind that their skepticism may come from a perception that you’re repeating the mistakes of your predecessors. Remember: the best way you can understand and win over skeptics is to keep them close to your side and involve them in planning initiatives. You may know more about IT. Be prepared to listen to your power user skeptics. They might even provide a valuable window into the business needs of your organization.Stage 1> Plan the Plan • Post positive performance indicators and testimonials from satisfied users at public places on your intranet. and they may have more knowledge of how things have played out on the ground in the past.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 38 .

Your organization mission statement should answer three equally important questions: Why do we exist? Whom do we serve? What do we produce? Step 4 – Define Core Business and Its Boundaries Examine your organization’s core competencies. Put together a reasonably detailed description on your organization. to better understand your industry. Use your steering committee Use members of your committee – such as participants from the senior management team – for information gathering. the IT strategy must be functionally aligned with the business strategy. Mission.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Stage Step 1 – Describe the Company and Its Background Analyze how your organization got to where it is today. and Core Values O ~ An analysis of the industries in which your organization operates will provide a deeper context to your current strategic mission and key objectives. channels. determine what customers. T E C Step 2 – Conduct an Industry Analysis H R E S E A R C In this stage you will analyze your organization’s background. Document your organization’s mission and vision statements and list your core values. Can you describe your organization’s overall purpose? Steering committee members should have information for this stage readily at hand. Page 39 I N F Step 3 – Document Vision. Use these analysis tools. H G R O U In the four-quadrant business-IT alignment model outlined in the introduction to this methodology. Realistically. What makes you special and different? Once you have defined your core business. If not. have committee members invite resource people from their departments to help you build this information. The culmination of your analysis should be a succinct set of well-defined corporate objectives as well as an understanding of the environment in which your organization competes. as well as the theory contained in the background section. and competitors are within those boundaries. mission and core values. 2 P . you can’t hope to integrate your IT strategy with the business strategy of the organization if you can’t first demonstrate a clear understanding of the business strategy. Look at your history in terms of dates and growth milestones but also in terms of past challenges that have been overcome.

.................... 43 Step 3 – Document Vision...... In This Stage Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy..................................................................................................................................... 52 Porter’s Five Forces Model ........................................... 44 Step 4 – Define Core Business and Its Boundaries .. Step 6 – List Strategic Objectives P G R O U Summarize your analysis in a succinct and forceful set of business objectives......................................................................... 48 Background > Analyzing Business Strategy....... 55 Identify Your Organization’s Core Competencies ........................................... 46 Step 6 – List Strategic Objectives................................................................................... 45 Step 5 – Create a Financial Picture..................................................................................................................... These are the specific strategic objectives that you hope our IT strategy will align with.......................................... and Core Values ........................Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 5 – Create a Financial Picture Gather up-to-date financial information of your organization.............................. 51 Industry Lifecycles ................. Mission............................................... 54 Environmental Analysis (PEST) .................................................................................. 49 A Company’s Value Chain ............................................................ 42 Step 2 – Conduct an Industry Analysis.... Financial information is one of the few ways you can make a real ‘apples to apples’ comparison of your organization to the rest of the industry...... 39 Step 1 – Describe the Company and its Background.................. 55 Key Success Factors....................... 57 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 40 ..................................... 49 The Supply Chain ................ 47 Stage Summary....

........................................... 49 2..........................Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Workbook Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy................ mission...7 Core Business and Its Boundaries ............................11 Key Success Factor Analysis Tool .......................... 47 2....... 55 2.... 44 2................................ 33 2...............2 Industry Definition....................................5 Core Values .............4 PEST Analysis .........................................6 Company Mission and Vision ..... is that you be kept in the loop if there are any significant changes in direction................... 38 2.... from an agility standpoint............................................................ 51 2..................................................8 Business Unit Core and Goals ........................................................... An important issue......3 Priority Industries.. 45 2............................9 Company Financial Picture...... 42 2........... 41 Agility Tip: Keep an Eye on Change The tools in the workbook for this section are designed to help document a company’s vision... 57 P I Page 41 2............................................. 35 2........................... and objectives.....................10 Company Strategy and Goals .... It is hoped that these elements are already documented or at least there is a firm idea of what they are in the heads of your senior executives................................................................... N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U ...................... Aligning with strategic goals that are moving targets can be hard enough............................... but not knowing that the target has been moved will be even worse.1 Company Background and Description ...... core business...................

The key to this section is to develop an appreciation of your organization from a business perspective. Begin with historical information and documents about your organization. you will in the next step sharpen your understanding of where your enterprise stands in relation to competitors. Having sharpened your understanding of the company.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 1 – Describe the Company and Its Background Objective: • P Build a synopsis of your organization including where it comes from and where it is going. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 42 . Consult existing organization documents (e. on the horizon? Make sure your profile takes account of recent and pending changes.g. financial statements. You may be surprised to find that. the easiest place to start is the most recent annual report. What You Need To Do ü Outline Your Organization History. while everybody feels they know why the company exists. although it may not be in an ideal format. Much of this information will be readily available. What kind of challenges and crises has your organization overcome? Are there major changes. such as a change in ownership. business plans. In a public organization. By focusing on your vision of the company you will better be able to focus on the technologies and policies that will help it succeed. ü Outline Recent/Future Challenges and Changes. Members of your steering committee should also be able to supply this information. The aim of this stage is to build a structured profile of your company.1 Company Background and Description” to create a brief history and description of your organization. Use the worksheet “2. annual reports). there is no consistent written understanding of where the company came from or where it is going.

Economical. use the worksheet “2. your organization may operate in different industries. Conducting an industry analysis and understanding industry drivers will help you better understand your corporate mission and strategy. Every organization operates in at least one market with at least one product.4 PEST (Political. If so. Use the worksheet “2. you may want to take your industry understanding a step deeper. ü Conduct a PEST Analysis. Most importantly. complete a “2. What You Need To Do G R O U I Page 43 ü Define your industry. Each industry has different dynamics. Depending on the complexity of your customers and products.3 Priority Industries” to determine if any industries are viewed as a more important strategic priority to the organization. Social. and Technological) Analysis”. Economic. Porter’s Five Forces Model.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Step 2 – Conduct an Industry Analysis Objective: • Gather implications based on an analysis of the industries in which the organization operates. levels of competitiveness and levels of profitability.2 Industry Definition” in the workbook to document your industry. Your definition is based on the answers to the following questions: • • • In what industry (or industries) does the organization compete? How large is the industry and what role does your organization play in it? Is the industry dynamic and quick to change. and Technological) analysis. Social. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P . The background to this stage includes additional information about Industry Lifecycles. If your organization operates in multiple industries. Depending on the size and complexity of your organization. you probably have several distinct customer sub-groups and product groups. or is it a traditional industry where things have been essentially the same for the last 20 years? ü Prioritize multiple industries. and PEST (Political. A PEST analysis will give you a firm understanding of the environment within which the organization is operating. These are standard management theories that will help you in your analysis.

Core values guide our day-to-day behaviors and collectively create the desired culture of the organization.” If your organization does not have a mission statement. Most organizations’ visions say things like “to create an organization with which customers line up to do business and for which employees can’t wait to come into work. I N F O ~ T E Page 44 . the top leadership in the organization. Your organization operates on a set of values that guide strategic planning and organization direction. Use the worksheet “2. They are traits your organization will never give up (even in difficult times). Mission.6 Company Mission and Vision” to document corporate vision and mission statements. List the core beliefs and philosophies that drive your organization’s strategy. They determine the norms or standards of acceptable behavior concerning how to approach your work. While individual values can be different. A vision statement describes an image toward which your organization is striving.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 3 – Document Vision. They are driven by. and Core Values Objectives: • • P G R O U Document the Mission and Vision Statements of your organization. an organization as a whole requires shared values. your organization has both a vision and a mission statement. Use these statements to fill out this section. use the Mission Development Triangle below to develop a working statement. ü Document organization mission and vision. they should be few in number and meet the following criteria: • • • • They are shared by a majority in the organization. and crystallized from. just get the key concepts down on paper. Use the worksheet “2. What You Need To Do ü List core values. For now. C H R E S E A R C H More than likely. Sometimes called “beliefs” or “philosophies”.5 Core Values” to list the values on which your organization culture and direction rest. Don’t worry about finding the perfect wording for either the vision or the mission statements. They are enduring and consistent over time.

Enter these unique core business lines into worksheet “2. channels. define core business lines and boundaries for each unit. defining your core business may either be an easy task or a very difficult one.8 Business Unit Core and Goals” to create a profile for each business unit. Use worksheet “2. Depending on the size of your organization. many managers often realize that they spend an inordinate amount of time on activities related to ancillary business rather than focusing on Page 45 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . Identify core business and boundaries for individual business units. Part of defining your core business is also drawing a boundary as to what falls outside your core business. There are a lot of consulting companies whose primary business is helping firms determine their core business.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Step 4 – Define Core Business and Its Boundaries Objectives: • • Identify those activities that fall inside and outside of the core business. It should not be as difficult as this – spend some time thinking about which line or lines of business are at the heart of your organization’s success. ü If you have more than one business unit. In contemplating this section. operations.7 Core Business and Its Boundaries”. and competitors. What You Need To Do ü Think about which line or lines of business are at the heart of your organization’s success. ü Define the boundaries for the core business in terms of market.

For example. channels. You should still attempt to obtain some. financial information is provided on a need-toknow basis only. If you work for a publicly traded company. Once you have collected information about your own organization. or all. Financial information is one of the few ways you can make a real ‘apples to apples’ comparison of your organization to the rest of the industry. Although you may already have an intuitive sense of what falls within and what falls outside of your core business.9 Company Financial Picture” to construct a financial profile of your organization and its competitors. In most private companies. putting it down in writing should solidify your understanding. Once you have defined the core.Strategic IT Planning and Governance making improvements to the core. list your organization’s information in the top box and list the industry average in the box below. Private companies are not obligated to furnish financial information to either their employees or the general public. P G R O U Step 5: Create a Financial Picture Objectives: • Create a financial profile of your organization. and competitors are within the boundaries. I N F O ~ T E C H Page 46 . of the following information because it will give you a sense of how well your organization is doing financially and how strong you are relative to other companies in your industry. Talk to your finance department and senior management. Tire design and manufacture would not be included in the car maker’s core business. do some research using either the Internet or industry associations to find out how you compare to others in the industry. What You Need To Do H R ü Use the worksheet “2. determine what customers. financial information about your organization is public record and should be easy to find. The worksheet lets your create profiles for the following: • • • • • • Total Company Revenues Growth Rate of Company Revenues Total Revenue Over the Internet Growth Rate of Internet Revenues Number of Employees Expected Number of Employees • • • • • Capital Budget Operating Profit Inventory Turns Cost of Goods Sold Cost of Labor R E S E A C ü For each category. a car manufacturer’s core business may be designing engines.

10 Company Strategy and Goals” to formulate lists of primary strategic goals and business objectives. Depending on the organization. An organization strategy can take many different forms and timeframes. After you have identified how the Key Success Factors influence management decisions. Financial Information) ü Use the worksheet “2.11 Key Success Factor Analysis Tool”. non-financial goals. This tool will look beyond what the organization wants to achieve to a more specific analysis of what the organization has to do. these may or may not be properly defined. improved brand recognition. such as number of new product launches. (Mission Statement. We suggest using point form and listing no more than ten objectives. Create a succinct list of business objectives. It may consist of financial targets. Vision Statement. What You Need To Do ü Review all of the information collected in this stage of the methodology. Core Business Definition. you should prioritize the Key Success Factors so that you focus attention on the largest areas of opportunity. ü Take your analysis further with “2. Businesses operate towards a set of business objectives. you can determine what the Key Success Factors are for achieving these. It may also consist of other. Keep your list of business objectives close at hand and refer back to it when completing subsequent sections. Compare the business objectives you determined with the ones listed in your organization’s business plan or annual report. Read back through the work you have completed and tie it together into one powerful document outlining your business objectives. Page 47 .Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Step 6 – List Strategic Objectives Objectives: • • Create a succinct list of primary corporate strategic goals. increase in share price. or a decrease in levels of inventory. such as revenue and profit growth. The point of this section is to clarify your organization’s strategic business objectives. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Key Success Factors Now that you have identified your goals and strategy. or additional partnership arrangements. Companies’ stated intentions are often very different from the forces actually driving the organization.

you should be able to tell an audience where your company comes from. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. In a few PowerPoint slides. and how it fits in the market in which it competes. The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 2 of the engagement. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 48 . This is foundational information for building strategy. Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Document Your Business Strategy You should now have a set of descriptions of your organization that can be used to compare with your IT strategy in order to promote alignment. what its primary objectives are.

This information will be particularly helpful if you do not have a background in management theory. It is not enough to simply know what your organization’s strategy is. Page 49 . one can uncover how an organization has developed (or not developed) competitive advantage. Complete alignment between your business strategy and IT strategy is the most important determinant of success. If this is not possible. you must appreciate why your organization’s strategy is set the way it is. If your organization is in the process of developing a strategic plan. use documented existing business strategy as the basis for your IT strategy. To effectively develop an IT strategy you not only need to completely understand the strategy. IT strategy and business strategy should be developed in a parallel process. This background section contains many common business strategy theories that will help give you a more complete understanding of the analysis and frameworks which are commonly applied to determine business strategy.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Background > Analyzing Business Strategy In order to proceed with IT Strategy development. By examining the value chain. Throughout this methodology you will refer back to the goals and strategic objectives of the business and ask how IT initiatives reinforce and support these objectives. now is the perfect time to pitch the idea of concurrently developing an IT plan. you must start by building your understanding of your business and its strategy. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U A Company’s Value Chain A value chain is a “string” of processes within a company that interrelate and work together to meet market demands. Ideally. The following chart developed by Michael Porter shows the value chain found in a typical company.

Strategic analysis determines which of the activities are most important (i.Strategic IT Planning and Governance G R O U P A R The various parts of the company’s business processes (inbound logistics. 1. marketing and sales. and determines ways to increase that value. Increasing Unit Revenue: This usually involves improving the real and perceived value to the customer. the higher the profit. maximizing margin is an objective of most businesses. leading to higher prices. Examples include: • • • Branding Quality and innovation Effective targeting I Page 50 . How can a company achieve this? There are two main ways to improve margins: decreasing unit costs. Examples include: • • • Savings on raw materials Productivity improvements Overhead reduction N F O ~ T E C H R E S E 2. contribute the most value) from the customer’s perspective. and increasing unit revenue. Margin is essentially a ratio of the operating income to the sales revenue – the bigger the margin. and so on) each contribute different amounts of value to the company. Obviously.e. Decreasing Unit Costs: This is reducing the costs of providing the same amount of value to customers. C H Maximizing Margin The goal of a well-functioning value chain is to maximize margin.

to manufacturer. nearly 50% of companies do not have good information about their supply chains. P Considering the critical strategic role of the supply chain. Page 51 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U . and finances as they move from supplier. to retailer. information. to wholesaler. The average firm spends twice as much on its supply chain as the best firm. to consumer. This is even more astounding given the power of information sharing that the Internet and similar technologies allow. showing how important the supply chain is to company performance.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy The Supply Chain A supply chain is a process that consists of materials.

offer trust. Too many companies see salvation in technology. and by customer. Practice enlightened self-interest – share forecast and other data with suppliers. 6. Straighten out the strategy first. 5. Defer IT spending decisions until key strategy elements are in place. and demand the same of your customers. Avoid “one size fits all” solutions. I N F O ~ Page 52 . ask for reciprocity and work to improve your communications channel. tie supply chain executives’ pay to return on assets (ROA) and vendor metrics. Excellent supply chain management means juggling multiple supply chains simultaneously. Enlist the A players. Work beyond your four walls. The supply chain leaders hire the very best strategists – the best purchasing experts. “Organized interdependence” is the goal. 4. 3. Reward cross-functional collaboration as well. you can’t improve. these charts are used to explain the strategies of companies bringing new products to market. One study says three of the four drivers of supply chain excellence are not related to technology but to alignment of the organization and to performance measurement. T E C H R E S E A R C H Industry Lifecycles Analyzing where your organization and industry is in terms of its lifecycle is another way to understand management’s attitude towards IT planning initiatives. Align the incentives correctly. Most of the time. People do what they’re paid to do. Replace rules of thumb with metrics. the best logistics pros – and get them to work together under a top executive whose mandate is supply chain excellence. not just what happens inside your business. but they are just as powerful in terms of understanding when and why companies spend money on IT planning and governance.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Untangling Your Supply Chain Companies that have the best supply chain performance follow six principles: 1. Measure the “what ifs” and track your entire supply chain. To reach it. by channel. Tie incentives to the big goals: as you would hook transportation managers’ pay to on-time performance and tracking costs. Find below two charts popularized by Geoffrey Moore. and then determine which metrics matter most. P G R O U 2. Top performers differentiate by product. If you don’t measure. Get the data on everything from vendor delivery performance to forecast accuracy.

spend a couple of minutes thinking about where your organization is in its lifecycle. an organization in a young and rapidly developing industry may want to take the risk on untested technology with the potential payoff coming in the form of exponential growth. Nonetheless. This will help you later when you are prioritizing your projects. spending a lot of money on untested technology may not be a sound business decision. different divisions or products may be at different stages in the lifecycle. C H G R O U P . In fact.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy If you operate in a slow-moving industry with little prospect for growth. Page 53 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R There is no formula to determine what stage your organization is in. On the other hand.

The Power of Suppliers. In essence. along with a PEST analysis. high fixed costs. buyers are highly dependent on producer for their output. 2. the purchaser could buy the supplier. The Threat of Substitutes. 4. and economies of scale. there exists a significant cost to switch suppliers.e. Industry Rivalry. are concentrated. this model ties everything together – it. high storage costs. Page 54 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E . The power of suppliers increases if they can threaten to buy the purchaser. and customers are weak. The Power of Customers. Suppliers are weakened if there are many competitive suppliers. A R C H G R O U P The essential elements in Porter’s Five Forces model are: 1. Rivalry is intensified by factors such as a high number of competitors. low switching costs. The power of customers increases if there are few buyers with significant market share or if they can threaten to buy the producing firm or rival (backward integration). patents. 5.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Porter’s Five Forces Model The following diagram shows Michael Porter’s famous strategy model that describes the five forces of competition that affect a company and an industry. This usually impacts an industry through price competition i. The Threat of New Entrants. 3. The power of customers decreases if buyers are fragmented. they offer commodity products. or there are high switching costs. low levels of product differentiation. and high exit barriers. allows leaders to fully understand all the market forces that can impact their organization. or customers are powerful. This threat is mitigated by barriers to entry such as governmental regulation. Applying this framework lets you understand the market forces that can impact your organization. requirement of highly specialized technology/ equipment to make a product. slow market growth. the number of suitable alternatives available at a competitive price.

recruiting).g.g. base metals) or if the company is impacted by changes in the general economic environment (e.g. A core competency is a business function. the core competencies are the major source of differentiation in the marketplace that creates most of an organization’s profit. External factors can be categorized in four ways: 1.g. Since an organization can’t do all things equally well. A PEST Analysis is commonly used to determine what these external factors could be. process. Social: Social trends can be positive or negative. music) can be suddenly impacted by new technologies and related business models (e.g. Technological Political: The political environment is important in certain situations where there are legal issues with the company’s products (e.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy Environmental Analysis (PEST) The Environmental Analysis asks what external forces influence the company. Page 55 . sales./Japan automobiles). Certain industries (e. housing. retail).S.g. manufacturing. Political 2. Economic: Economics can play an important role if the company’s product is highly cyclical (e. KaZaA). tobacco) or disputes between jurisdictions (Canada/U. Core competencies are a subset of all business functions an organization has (e.S. lumber or U. Economic 3. or other discipline that provides significant competitive advantage for the organization that has it. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Identify Your Organization’s Core Competencies Successful managers identify and understand their organization’s core competencies and take appropriate actions relating to them. Technological: Technology also impacts companies and industries because of the new possibilities it creates. purchasing. Social 4.

Ask senior management. Review your performance appraisal system for core competency measurements and requirements. which the executive team is responsible for. Gradually. certain industries have most of their costs in one major category that is not a core competency (e.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Examples of Core Competencies Core competencies can exist in any functional area. you can market new products that you don’t today. SAP is not the world’s best operating system or database software writer. Ideally. P Identifying Core Competencies ü Look where the largest portion of financial and other resources go. which gives them more of a competitive advantage than having the latest products. In their case. if marketing is your core competency.g. you can increase your budget or increase the number of people working in those core competencies. Page 56 I N F O ~ • • . However. However. For example. This may be your core competency. Similarly. For example. G R O U ü A R C H S E ü ü T E C H R E Implications of Core Competencies There are three major strategies you can pursue after identifying core competencies: • Invest more resources in them. Dell is not effective at research and development. For example. their efficient. SAP is especially effective at writing enterprise software. In the IT department. Monitor changes in core competencies over time. Apply them to other related industries and opportunities.g. They have a significantly smaller R&D budget than Hewlett-Packard or IBM and don’t produce any leadingedge products. The change in core competencies has major implications for which projects and departments IT should support. you should also invest more in supporting these core competencies (e. New areas must be developed into core competencies. low price.g. investing in the latest CAD workstations if engineering is your core competency). customers should be immediately able to tell you what they think your core competencies are (e. For example. but don’t achieve competitive advantage from these purchases). great customer service). Companies’ core competencies do not extend to everything the organization does. cutting-edge products. your performance appraisal system should be in sync with your organization’s overall core competencies. it doesn’t really matter because they can partner with Microsoft or Oracle to make sure their enterprise software runs on their platforms. low-inventory manufacturing and supply chain systems don’t require lots of research and development – they can charge low prices and react very quickly to changes in customer demand. Ask customers why they buy from you. If you have significant advantages that customers see every day (as opposed to process advantages they don’t really see). Core competencies are usually part of the strategic plan. Dell also has a core competency in manufacturing PCs. core competency areas become less and less of a competitive advantage. airlines spend most of their funds on airplanes and fuel.

GM would have to sell many more cars or increase the price per car to make money. Therefore. GM would need to know the total amount of overhead spending. other companies have developed similar competencies and eroded IBM’s competitive advantage. one Key Success Factor is sales and marketing capability. Note that this can cause problems (e. selling cars below cost to increase factory utilization metrics).000 units of capacity. and the average contribution per unit sold was $5.000. the Key Success Factors must be identified and monitored in case conditions change. the total opportunity from increasing units sold would be $500 million. For the overhead cost Key Success Factor. Therefore.g.Stage 2> Document Your Business Strategy For example. If GM had an extra 100. controlling overhead costs is another Key Success Factor. General Motors would need some specific financial information about the two Key Success Factors it has previously identified: increasing sales units and reducing overhead costs. GM’s profitability is heavily influenced by the number of units it can sell. C I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R H Page 57 G R O U Key Success Factors P . However. Key Success Factors are the most important parts of the strategy or conditions that may exist in the marketplace or your organization without which your strategy would fail. If there were a sudden increase in overhead costs. but if a Key Success Factor is the number of units produced by the factory. GM would need to know how much extra capacity manufacturing plants had. Key Success Factor Example: General Motors General Motors has large investments and fixed costs in its manufacturing plants. Since conditions change. This has major implications for what functions their IT department will support and how much support they will provide. so you should identify them and come up with ways of dealing with these problems during the process of structuring compensation packages and not afterwards. GM has several alternatives of how to structure the compensation package for its sales force. Because these large fixed costs are relatively constant. Today. For the sales units metric. Total sales revenue or total revenue of new products are two possibilities. Similarly. IBM is selling off parts of their hardware business and focusing on developing new core competencies in software and services. controlling overhead costs is very important. IBM used to have a significant core competency with manufacturing mainframes and other hardware. another possibility is to compensate the sales force based on factory utilization or the number of units shipped. and how much unit contribution GM made on each unit sold.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 58 .

Without a firm understanding of your existing technology assets. In Stage 2 you were asked to map the particulars of your organization’s Business Strategy. you are essentially operating in the dark and strategic planning will be a futile effort. procedures and processes. Documenting and analyzing each of these areas will provide you with a clear picture of where you are currently sitting. By documenting your current IT situation. Page 59 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U A balanced Strategic IT Plan must integrate both with your business strategy and with your IT infrastructure. and human resources – and for developing an optimization plan. You can’t manage what you don’t know you have. This should include functional areas like network support. Understanding your current IT situation is achieved by looking at three key areas: • • • Organizational infrastructure Hardware and software infrastructure Current IT projects Optimizing IT Infrastructure Info-Tech’s “Optimizing Your IT Department” consulting methodology provides a detailed. you will be able to recognize key areas of opportunity. Step 2 – Document Your Hardware and Software Infrastructure Identify and document your physical infrastructure. 3 P . This product will provide you with the tools and processes to develop a comprehensive and effective IT Infrastructure Plan that will optimize IT in your organization to best serve both the functional needs of business units and the strategic IT objectives of your organization. process for analyzing all facets of your IT infrastructure – IT architecture. Only by understanding your current position can you begin to develop a strategy for the future.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Stage A strategic IT plan has to integrate with your functional IT plans and infrastructure (See Background). In this stage you will map and analyze the characteristics of the Information Technology Infrastructure of your organization. and business analysts. It is strongly recommended that you complete this methodology concurrently with Strategic IT Planning and Governance. Step 1 – Document Your IT Organizational Infrastructure Prepare an organizational chart of your IT department. programmers. stepby-step.

..... Step 4 – Understand the IT Environment P G R O U Analyze the trends in your industry and the actions of your competitors..... In This Stage Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation .. 76 Asset Management Best Practices........... 62 Step 2 – Document Your Hardware and Software Infrastructure .......... 68 Background > Mapping IT Assets...................................................................................... 70 Rolling Out an Asset Management Initiative............ 70 Business Benefits of Asset Management ............ 75 Change Management ..................................................................... Look at industry trends and create competitor profiles................ 64 Step 4 – Conduct an IT SWOT Analysis .. 73 Conducting a Software Asset Inventory ............................................................................................................... Defining the projects currently being worked on by the IT department will help you understand whether IT is aligned with the overall goals of your business........................................ 79 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 60 .............................................................................. 71 Conducting a Hardware Asset Inventory ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 78 Understand the IT Environment....................... 69 Skills Development .................. 66 Stage Summary. 63 Step 3 – Audit Current IT Projects .....Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 3 – Audit Current IT Projects Understanding the current workload and spending patterns is essential to planning for the future.................................................................................. 69 Thoughts on Staffing Needs ........... 59 Step 1 – Document Your IT Organizational Infrastructure.........................................

....1 Organizational Chart..... should be a part of any major initiative............ 65 N F O ~ T E You have to know where you are to chart where you are going.....................10 Project Scope Statement..............................................Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Workbook Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation .................................... If you don’t...4 Network Diagram Primer .............................................. 71 3....................... 60 3................7 Hardware Inventory .......... Don’t forget to form relationships with your “IT irregulars”. 87 3......................................................................... from departmental optimization to disaster planning.....................................................9 Current IT Projects .................... 67 3................................................8 IT Expenditures Analysis ...6 Software Inventory................12 Competitor Profiles ........................... 75 3............................................................................. Find out what is going on outside of formal IT......... perhaps you have more pressing management issues to deal with before strategic level planning...............................2 IT Irregulars ............................. 69 3.. 62 3.................................................. 63 3. 90 3.............. A basic audit of current infrastructure...............5 Vendor Contact Information...3 Skills Mapping Tool.. You should have a lot of this information already...................... C H R E Agility Tips S E A R C H G R O U ........................................................................................................................................................................ including talent infrastructure............ 88 3.................................11 Industry Trends ...... 92 P I Page 61 3.... 84 3..................

IT professionals in other departments) that exist outside of the IT department. viruses. Volume of activity by task (e. Document IT resources (power users. Each employee’s responsibilities. and the volume of activity by task. user groups. ü Record individuals outside of the IT department who formally or informally provide IT services (Such as power users and IT support personnel within other departments). ü Use “3.g. desktop recoveries. This should include functional areas like network support. each employee’s responsibilities.3 Skills Mapping Tool” to develop a map of the skills in your IT department. where your organizational IT skills lie.1 Organizational Chart. Also include the following information: • • • Number of people in your department.” This PowerPoint template will help you create a chart that includes the number of people in your department. What You Need To Do ü Prepare an organizational chart of your IT department. and so on. Document IT service providers and key IT vendors. new application installation). Use the worksheet “3.2 IT Irregulars” to record names and contact information for this important internal IT resource. password reset. programmers. beyond a simple head count. Use the tool “3. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 62 . Prepare an organizational chart of your IT department similar to the example below. This will help you understand. business analysts.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 1 – Document Your IT Organizational Infrastructure Objectives: • • P G R O U • Create a map of who does what in your IT department.

switch. manufacturer and model number. and desktop. Audit all enterprise software. router. Using the worksheets in “3. contact information. and training and service level agreements.5 Vendor Contact Information” to gather this information.6 Software Inventory” to create a document that includes license information. ü Create a software inventory. firewall. IP address. Use the worksheet “3. vendor contact. operating system. While the concept of asset management is familiar to most decision makers. software packages. For each component that is identified in the diagram. What You Need To Do ü Create/acquire a network diagram. service and agreements. ü Conduct a complete hardware inventory.4 Network Diagram Primer” for more. Document vendor and service provider contact information. Managing your IT portfolio in a current networked computing environment requires more than simply conducting a physical inventory. provide the following information: component’s name. For example: Page 63 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . its implementation has largely been sporadic and half-hearted. vendor information. ü Create a directory of all vendor account numbers. Without a firm understanding of your existing technology assets.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Step 2 – Document Your Hardware and Software Infrastructure Objectives: • • • Create a detailed view of all physical IT assets. Use the worksheet “3.7 Hardware Inventory” to list each server. hub. See “3. you are essentially operating in the dark and strategic planning will be a futile effort.

If you have recently gathered infrastructure data. Use the worksheet “3. Create a consolidated record of all current IT projects. Even if usable data is collected. copy it into your workbook. you may do regular audits for asset management or have reviewed your infrastructure for a Disaster Recovery Plan. it is often rendered unusable because it is stored in separate formats across a variety of spreadsheet and database programs.10 Project Scope Statement” to create a project description for each major IT project currently underway. refer to the background section of this stage. What You Need To Do ü Analyze current IT expenditures. can become an important decision-making tool in any organization. Understanding your department’s current workload and spending patterns is essential to planning your upcoming year. For more information and advice on asset management. Use the worksheet “3. This section focuses on identifying where your department spends its money and what projects are currently on your plate. For example. E S E A R C H R Step 3 – Audit Current IT Projects Objectives: • • Develop a snapshot picture of current IT expenditures.8 IT Expenditures Analysis” to record the current profile of expenditures in your IT department. ü Document your IT projects. these stabs at asset management happen on a departmental level.9 Current IT Projects” to list current major IT projects. if implemented correctly. More often than not. G R O U Asset management.Strategic IT Planning and Governance • • • P Many organizations send out hardware and software inventory surveys. but much of the information is incomplete and inconsistent. Use the template “3. Don’t reinvent the wheel. I N F O ~ T E C H Page 64 . Agility Tip: Have You Been Here Before? The kind of basic audit information required for this section may well already be on hand. No enterprise-wide picture emerges upon which key strategic decisions can be made. The worksheet includes seven questions you can ask in analyzing current expenditures.

Effective Project Management: Tools. Info-Tech offers a comprehensive consulting methodology. the better you will be able to make strategic decisions about projects. Be ruthless in your analysis of current projects and expenditures. Templates and Best Practices to help you get your projects into shape. your budgeted figures may provide you with a more accurate picture. Include spending in the following categories: • • • • • Labor Outside services Hardware Software Other H I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C • • • • Telecommunication Repairs Leases Training P G R O U Break down this information further in the following ways: • • • • Capital assets versus expenses Growth rate over time Percent of total IT budget Percent of organization sales Clearly defining the projects currently being worked on by your department will help you understand whether the IT department is aligned with the overall goals of your business. use last year’s figures to complete this section.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Where does your IT department spend its budget? If you have just completed a year-end. Agility Tip: Project Discipline is Key The Project Scope Statement will help you provide further detail on each major project. be prepared to take action. but remember that the more realistic you make your numbers. Alternatively. The better your project information. Page 65 . the more accurate your strategic plan will be. Use your judgment. If projects or expenses do not match the goals of the organization. if you are part of the way through your current fiscal year.

If your company is like most. Here are some additional tips to help you and your department to keep up-to-date: 1. Use a diverse set of information sources.12 Competitor Profiles” to profile a selection of main competitors.11 Industry Trends” to work up a list of technology trends that could impact your company’s competitiveness.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 4: Understand the IT Environment Objective: • Create a view of where IT is going in your industry by looking at publicly available IT news information as well as at your competitors. N F O ~ T E C H R S I Industry Trends Staying abreast of industry trends is an on-going process. everything related to technology. you may be using technology that is becoming obsolete. McLean Report provides more high-level advice on the management and strategic use of technology in the enterprise. Both products are based on extensive scanning of the business and IT management environment. Getting a solid understanding of the current environment will make the task of keeping up-to-date easier in the long run. Use the worksheet “3. and general news. Use “3. or knowledge of. Industry trends are changes happening in the marketplace of technology. or are just starting to use a new technology that none of your competitors are using. For example. ü Develop Competitor Profiles. the pace of technological change suggests that much of what you knew two years ago is obsolete. Take this opportunity to do an intensive survey of industry trends and the actions of your competitors. E A R C H E Info-Tech Advisor and McLean Report Clients of Info-Tech Research Group have ready access to two excellent tools for tracking technology and business trends. Page 66 . This can be one of the toughest parts of your job. However. the CEO and other senior management expect you to have an opinion on. business. Info-Tech Advisor provides on-going research into IT department management practice as well as the practical implications of technology trends. Understanding how your competition is using technology to gain a competitive advantage will provide you with a point of reference against which you can benchmark your company’s performance. Meet with your IT department as well as your steering committee. Looking at what is happening in your industry and with your competitors provides you with one of the best ways to benchmark your company’s performance. On a weekly basis. What You Need To Do P G R O U ü Identify Important Industry Trends. you should at least be reading publications focused on technology. Schedule some time into your week to keep your knowledge base current and relevant.

Though it’s a difficult topic to broach. IT spending. Customers. Put the document into a shared folder and make it a requirement that everybody in your department add at least one idea to the document per week. Enterprise systems (ERP. CRM). Ideas from this document will become some of your department’s future projects. Make environmental scanning a requirement for everybody in your department. Internal technologies used (e. online ordering). direct payment. Create an “Ideas and Opportunities” living document. Make “keeping up-to-date” part of their performance evaluations. Competitors’ Web sites. Vendors. N F Talk to your sales and marketing people about the competition. instant messaging. ask about lost sales. Conducting a periodic review of the files will provide you with better industry trend data than you will find anywhere else. Number of IT staff. Applications being used. Functionality offered to customers (e. H R E S E A R C H P . Magazines and other public sources of information. How have we been beaten in the past? Is there something the competition is doing better than we are? How is technology aiding them? How have we used technology to get ahead of them in the past? O ~ T E Agility Tips: They Who Know the Competition C Sort the information into files on your biggest competitors and update the files as you learn new information. Here are some ways of learning this information: Your employees who used to work for them. Consultants. video conferencing).Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation 2. G R O U I Page 67 Competitor Profiles Here are some types of information you should know about your competitors. Status of PC environment. 3. Assign each person a specific publication or topic area.g.g.

The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 3 of the engagement. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 68 .Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Assess the Current IT Situation The IT audit sets a starting point against which you can analyze the gaps between what is and what should be. In the next stage of this methodology. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision. you will set your sites on an ideal IT situation. one that will help the enterprise achieve its strategic goals.

you could be left with a large staffing gap with no one to do the requisite work. Organizing around work roles offers a simple “cookie cutter” approach. This model calls for your Information Technology Strategy to align on a horizontal axis with your business strategy. Organizing around a complete team with a broad skill set to flexibly meet a variety of specific missions as they arise. In the Background section to Stage 2 we provided some additional information on business analysis so that you can more fully understand the process of business strategic planning. For example: • • Organizing around services ensures that business needs are being met. your organization will have developed (or will concurrently be developing) a business strategy. including: • • • Organizing around the services to be provided such that business needs are adequately reflected. Page 69 . but if needs change rapidly. without a firm grasp of your current IT infrastructure you will also be at a disadvantage for developing an IT strategy. but what if you can’t find a replacement worker fast enough? In this case. This section is not a substitute for a full Infrastructure Planning tool. In this section we offer additional information on Information Technology Infrastructure analysis. If no business strategy exists. Similarly. Each of these methods has its strengths and weaknesses. however. it will give you added insights into technology for infrastructure planning. Organizing around work roles so that people are easier to replace when they leave. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Thoughts on Staffing Needs Theories abound on how to organize an IT department. A strategic IT plan and an IT infrastructure plan are not the same thing though they relate to each other on a very fundamental level.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Background > Mapping IT Assets In an ideal situation. you are at a disadvantage for creating an Information Technology Strategy. but also on a vertical axis with your Information Technology Infrastructure. you could be left stumbling to fill the holes. Consider the four quadrant IT/Business alignment model discussed in the introduction to this methodology.

g.000 in savings over 12 months. P R • E S E A H R • • T E C • I N F O ~ Business Benefits of Asset Management Any business. this could translate into $900. so can employee value. can significantly reduce costs and engage in better decision making by actively practicing asset management.500 PCs. large or small. demand a big training investment in highly specialized skills that aren’t portable across other technologies. COM on Tandem). Look for Skills Upgrade Candidates: Staffers with a high-demand.g.Strategic IT Planning and Governance The approach you choose will depend on the pace of your industry and your organization’s position within that industry. Build a skills map that outlines those skills required by: all workers.” Train Small Groups: Don’t train your entire development team on a new technology. to personal and interpersonal skills. Degrees of technical versus management skills. properly implemented asset management can save an organization 20 to 40% per seat per year in IT costs. For a typical enterprise with 2. specialized IT workers. • According to Gartner Group. This can really hamper your skills acquisition process. such as industry affiliation and the specific technologies and tools your organization employs. you must consider other factors that relate to your specific organization. ranging from technical. When that technology fades away. Beyond generic job type skills and duties. and those at your specific organization. Training small groups of specialists is faster and easier. IT workers. Fast moving organizations need to maximize flexibility. will manifest differently at junior versus senior levels. to business and management. not IT-specific skills. Avoid Niche Products: Niche technologies (e. Minimize Training in ‘Subsumable’ Skills: Do you want to invest heavily in training for grassroots XML coding. As skills become undesirable over time. or future XML design tools? Think ahead – invest in skills that will last and outsource the skills “du jour. for example. and allows trainees to do a specific job better. Page 70 . Forte). you have fewer staff to retrain. ready-to-go skill set are expensive and hard to find. Workers with low-demand IT skills can be hired and “reskilled” to do what you need faster and at a lower cost. Use these tips to help you create and maintain an efficient and responsive IT staff: H C • Create a Skills Map: Almost 60% of skills required by IT workers are general business skills. or mainstream technologies in a niche combination (e. Skills Development G R O U Specific jobs require different skill sets. which could lead to more extensive utilization of contractors and other outsourced services.

Uncover vendor accounting and invoicing errors. Anticipate and plan moves. The beneficial applications of asset management are myriad. Accommodate rapid technology changes and deploy new applications more quickly. installations and upgrades.5% overall by using asset management. creating an effective program is a sizeable undertaking. Efficiency and Productivity Benefits Help ready the organization for organizationwide migrations. Remove end-user access to “time-wasting” applications. Listed in the table below are the primary business “selling points” of diligent asset management: G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P Financial Benefits Perform accurate budgeting and forecasting of hardware and software expenses. Assure the organization of software license compliance. Rolling Out an Asset Management Initiative Given that comprehensive asset management is enterprise-wide in nature. Follow this 15-point checklist to help you get your plan underway: Page 71 . and organization restructuring. Move to standardized hardware and software purchasing. Identify potential incompatibilities between components prior to purchase. Discover and remove dormant assets. Deter theft of components by deploying entirely traceable equipment. Determine departmental charge-back billing. Cancel costly maintenance renewals for unused software. helping to avoid fines. and reduce piracy. Negotiate better hardware purchasing and software licensing agreements. personnel transfers. Create at-hand information for IT budgeting and planning. Ready the organization to absorb mergers and acquisitions more easily. minimize business disruptions. Identify correct amount of insurance coverage required through correct asset value estimation. International Data Corporation discovered savings of 13% per year on PC staffing costs alone due to asset management initiatives. Calculate total cost of ownership (TCO) or average price per equipment type. Avoid duplication in product purchases or double-coverage in contracts. allowing for eased support and volume discounts.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation • • Gartner Group has also found that the average lifecycle cost for a given asset can be reduced by 37. Give end users access to the right applications when they need them. Make the helpdesk more productive by giving them access to each desktop’s inventory.

financial. You need to understand the business that the IT department serves and the different units’ goals and objectives in order to effectively sell the asset management concept. Start with something you know you can solve. such as a single project that addresses a pre-existing asset category like tracking machines under lease or inventorying a single department. 8. These include all of the departments that you expect to comply with new policies and from whom you will be collecting data. Decide Whether or Not to Outsource: Given budgetary and personnel constraints. 7. 2. but do decide early. Pick Your Rollout Structure: Decide on a structured plan of attack. or perhaps tie inventory to directory services? It’s up to you. Identify Affected Parties: Understand all of the constituencies that will be affected by the asset management initiative. and how it is being maintained. preferably permanent metal tags. 6. One of the goals of asset management is to create standardized practices. Organize Manual Asset Tagging: All current and incoming assets should be physically tagged with unique asset tags. an asset management initiative should be rolled out in small steps. and legal records for all IT assets. if anything. Check Current and Historical Initiatives: Find out what asset data has already been gathered. 4. Look for a provider that offers extra services like infrastructure design and planning. This information must I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 72 . 5. for what purpose. Understand Existing Policies and Procedures: This includes any hardware and software purchasing policies. Apart from your own department.Strategic IT Planning and Governance 1. software migration planning. you can begin to identify areas of greatest need and plan your target goals. Plan for a Staged Rollout: Ideally. and so on. Gather Records: Find all technical. outsourcing your asset management may be a wise choice. You will need to compare these records against your actual inventory to identify gaps. Build Your Team: Form an asset management team made up of representatives from the affected constituencies. subsequent projects should be easier. Once you have ironed out the initial process glitches and demonstrated positive results. will give you a good indication of how much work you will have to do. Are you going to collect by department and roll into a centralized database. Finding out what these policies currently demand. These individuals may also be aware of local attempts at asset inventorying that you don’t know about. IT move/add/change request policies. 9. selection and deployment of tools. the purchasing department is a good place to check. This step is critical in order to uncover potential resistance and to ensure end-user compliance. By knowing your organization’s current state. 3. and software license management in addition to basic inventory services.

IT may have to take on responsibilities previously held by others to ensure an integrated process. Consider these statistics from Micropath: Page 73 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . so make sure the chain of command is well established. Next. Plan for Agent Installation: When buying an automated tool. Assign Ownership: To make sure that this initiative is converted into an on-going process. You may be able to automate this process using login scripts or a software distribution program. Combined with rigorous enforcement and follow-up. contract management. peripherals. Conducting a Hardware Asset Inventory A hardware asset inventory is a listing of all IT hardware in an organization. database merging. do a physical count of roughly 5% of your current IT systems. Set a Schedule: Plan a schedule for regular automated inventory scans. but may require some time. 13. an automated asset management solution is a must have. and network devices. Such assets are financially wasteful on many fronts. Also set up a schedule to run manual checks on non-networked devices that may be unscannable by automated tools. This is a one-time-only-per-device operation. someone needs to be assigned responsibility. rebilling of expenses. depreciation. 11. 10. In fact. these 15 tips should place you in good stead for deploying a successful asset management initiative. budgeting. One of the major early benefits of conducting a hardware asset inventory is the discovery of dormant or excessive assets. add-in cards. and reporting. use your new automated system solution to scan the same machines and compare accuracy. 14. including client computers. This will represent a baseline against which you can test the accuracy of the asset management product you bought. you will have to install agent software on each device. Plan Regular Checks: Perform regular asset scans not only to ensure your asset inventory is up-to-date. 12. This may include purchasing. This information is critical for technical planning and support as well as financial management. and checking of supplier invoices. Set Up a Baseline: Before using your new software. Incorporate agent installation into all new and upgrade machine builds. Pick Automated Tools: Gartner claims that asset management is 60% technology and only 40% methodology. 15. including cost of storage and lack of revenue-generating use. servers. If you have more than 200 desktops. Create and enforce a mandatory asset tagging policy.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation be recorded. but also to ensure that your asset management software is registering newer device specifications. This is a big responsibility.

like the ones mentioned above. bar code) E A R C H Many hardware asset inventories will be conducted at the PC or server level: that is. Below is a comprehensive list of fields you may wish to include for each discrete component. As such. and model Installed RAM All peripherals (keyboard. – runs between 17% for medium-sized companies and over 27% for Fortune 1000 companies. printers. including: • • • • • • • • Processor name. it is a good practice to note which system the component is tied to using the larger system’s unique identifier. You need to decide early on the level of detail you wish to achieve in your asset registry. size. tape. and type of disk drives Amount of remaining disk space Any other drives (CD. it is particularly important to itemize each individual component within the PC or server. The percentage of out-of-service IT equipment – desktops. Page 74 .Strategic IT Planning and Governance • • The average corporation has about 20% more workstations than they originally thought. and modem) Video card Network card Number. etc. modems. Identification Data Assigned user/department Physical location Administrative Data Date of acquisition Purchase order number Lease terms (if any) Purchase/leasing price Warranty information Contract information (maintenance and support) Historical Data Move/add/change history Other installed hardware Service history Installed software Usage history Associated peripherals Component make Component model Unique asset identification (serial number. is a part of a larger system. asset tag number. and zip) I N F O ~ T E C H R E S If a component. DVD. the components will be tied to and/or listed as part of an individual machine. servers. mouse. monitors. monitor. laptops. G R O U P Careful structuring of the information you wish to collect is an important first step. make.

put this project at the bottom of your to-do list. troubleshoot. • For example. software is something of an “invisible” asset. and perform better financial management. network. While including mobile and wireless devices in your asset management plans is important. product number. A software asset inventory is an up-to-date listing of detailed information about the client. See the table below for key information to track in your software inventory. Unbeknownst to them. you need to decide which data fields you wish to populate. terms. the average organization spends 10 to 20% of their software investment on software updates and support services. plan technology implementation. Polling a network to find out where they are is often not an option. The information you collect can be used to better manage license and support contracts.Stage 3> Assess the Current IT Situation Potential Problem Areas: Performing asset management on wireless and mobile devices is difficult given that they are highly portable. assets. license number) Application name Application vendor Application version Physical location Assigned user/department Workstation/server upon which software is installed Purchase order number Cost of license Cost of annual support and update fees License type. it is much harder to track and much easier to misuse than its hardware counterpart. have rapid usage cycles. Identification Data Administrative Data Historical Data Unique asset identification (serial number. most do not actually use a sizeable portion of these paid-for. because it is less physical. E A R C H G R O U Conducting a Software Asset Inventory P . Start by mandating the use of specific products and only then plan to conduct a manual count down the road. and are difficult to locate exactly. yet superfluous. however. Compared with hardware. and conditions (maintenance and support) License expiration date Warranty information Usage monitoring details Move/add/change history Training history Consulting history Page 75 I N F O ~ T E C H Date of acquisition Support history R E S As with conducting a hardware asset inventory. and server software installed across your entire organization.

and technology advances. (The data provided in this example is for demonstration purposes only and may not be accurate.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Change Management Asset management isn’t a one-off project – it is an on-going process. and configuration changes made to hardware and software. N F O ~ Example: Tracking Component Lifecycles Let’s walk through the process of tracking a PC and an operating system license over the course of their respective lifecycles. communication. The change management aspect of asset management involves the recording of all installations. removals. The result for IT is the ability to engage in risk management by responding to organization expansions. it is essential that it remain reflective of the actual state of affairs in your organization. If software is transferred between machines. Page 76 I . make the following changes to the asset database: • • • • H Location and/or staff to whom the hardware is assigned. who requested the purchase (by name and department). If it is a peripheral. and a brief description and statement of anticipated use of the intended system. flag it as deleted in the registry. This can be a single-field entry that lists the requisition date and number. If it is a workstation and has associated peripherals that are not being disposed. Managing change will necessarily involve the development. then change the workstation record. If the hardware is slated for disposal. P S E A R C G R O U If software is added or removed. yet hard to control.) Step 1 . This is particularly useful between actual inventory audits that just present a snapshot of what you have at a specific period in time. In essence. then flag the asset as removed in the database. If a hardware component is redeployed. In order for your asset database to remain useful. If the software is permanently removed.Requisition: Enter the requisition information into the asset database. you are earmarking a place in the asset repository for your new acquisition. Add an install date. then change the workstation identification field. then add a unique identifier that ties it to the workstation or server upon which it is installed. If the hardware is placed in storage. then delete the peripherals listed and redeploy them. employee changes. then change the workstation identification to which the asset is allocated. T E C H R E Engaging in rigorous change management practices is probably the most critical. asset volume and allocation changes as well. As things change within an organization. and enforcement of enterprise-wide policies for it to be effective. make the following changes to the asset database: • • • If software is installed. aspect of asset management.

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Step 2 - Procurement: When the asset arrives and before it is used, it is tagged with an asset tag and described in the asset database. Step 3 - Deployment: Once a user for the asset is identified, add the following information to the asset database.
PC User Location / Facility Make Model Serial Number Operating System Dell Optiplex Emily Chesley Finance Dell OptiPlex GX150 PC000762 Windows 2000 Professional NIC / IP Information Video Card 3Com Etherlink 123.456.789.01 16MB 4XAGP NVidia TNT2 Pro (#HD444366) Local Hard Drive Network Drives Local Printer Network Printers EIDE S.M.A.R.T. II Ultra ATA/100 20 GB

Hardware - PC Move/add/change history 07/07/01: Added 32MB RAM 15/03/01: Windows 2000 Professional (OS000578) added - no previous operating system 23/05/01: Jammed CD-ROM drive (technician deployed onsite) Basic office use 15/03/01: License transferred from PC PC000221 to PC000762 - same user 27/09/00: OS crash - technician deployed onsite 14/06/01: Installation of Service Pack 2 Launched 43 hours per week on average. No weekend use. End-User: Windows 2000 Professional Introduction (2-hour seminar for all end users) IT Staff: Microsoft Course 2152 (taken by Jane Jones) None

Service history Usage history Software - Operating System Move/add/change history Support history Usage monitoring details Training history

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If a hardware component or software license is moved to a different machine, changes must be recorded in at least two fields:

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Details must be entered in the “move/add/change history” field. Include activity dates in all history-related fields. The unique identifier in the “workstation/server installed on” field must be changed to that of the new workstation.

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Step 5 - Retirement: Upon retirement of an asset, an accurate account of where it is, what it contains, and all changes it has undergone are already on record. At this time, decisions need to be made as to which hardware components can be reused, sold, or discarded, and which software licenses can be redeployed in the organization. • If a component is to be discarded, flag that asset’s record in the registry as deleted. Ensure that changes are also made in the “installed components” and “associated peripherals” fields.

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Like any management procedure, there is a collection of best practices associated with asset management. Apply the following to your initiative: 1. Beware of Culture Shock: Asset management will probably require a restructuring of how certain traditional processes, such as purchasing, are done. Some users and department heads may resent this or have trouble making the transition. Learning to comply with new asset management policies and procedures will likely require some training, so be prepared. 2. Ensure End-User Compliance: Behavior modification may be in order to make your asset management plan achieve the desired benefits. Here are some examples of what you may need to communicate in terms of end-user participation: • • Ensure that remote machines are left turned on during the scanning period. Mandate that users notify IT prior to any changes that might affect inventory. This includes hires, terminations, moves, and strategic plans that involve IT assets. Employ e-mail or an asset change form on the intranet to facilitate this communication. If the number of available software licenses is tight, ask end users to schedule use for non-peak usage hours to avoid purchasing more. Get users to exit an application when they are not using it to ensure license availability and avoid over-purchasing. Some users will “horde” an app by launching it early and leaving it idle to ensure availability when needed.

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3. Enforce Standardization: META Group says standardization of hardware and software purchased for the desktop alone can reduce costs by up to $650 per seat per year. Standardization limits the number of products that helpdesk and IT staff need to learn to support, as well as allows greater leverage in purchasing volume discounts. 4. Automate Software Distribution: Deployment is a key stage in the lifecycle of an asset, and an excellent cost-saving opportunity. Automating software distribution is a simple, labor saving device that has a big impact on the bottom line by lowering the cost of managing IT assets. 5. Focus on Software Asset Management First: Potential cost-savings associated with well-managed software assets include overall reductions in license fees, update fees, and software support. Other areas of benefit include system administration, and management time spent on budgeting, documenting, and figuring charge backs. Because of these factors, software asset management has the fastest return on investment. 6. Perform Inventory Scans During Off Hours: Evenings and weekends are ideal times to perform automated scans since the tax on the system and associated bandwidth is reduced. 7. Communicate With Others: To get the most benefit from asset management, the data gathered through this process must be made available to financial, administrative, and technical planners, as well as system administrators and the helpdesk. Key data includes contract terms, hardware and software inventory, accounting, maintenance records, change history, support history, and other technical and financial information. Decide the types of reports needed and who will get them. 8. Broadcast Your Results: Publicize the beneficial results of your efforts. This will not only make you look like a cost-saving star, but it will also help change the minds of buyin hold-outs.

Environmental scanning is becoming a skill required of more and more IT managers. Understanding trends in your industry and the actions of your competitors has never been more important to the IT function. Depending on your situation, you will want to adapt the information for which you are looking and you may want to broaden your scope to include trends and analysis not specifically related to technology, but which may impact you and your department’s role in the future.

Industry Trends
Keeping on top of all the trends that may affect your business and your technology decisions is a difficult task at best. This does not mean, however, that you do not have to scan the environment on an on-going basis.

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every company in your industry may be using the same technology. but in others you may be able to gain competitive advantage by implementing systems that differentiate your company. Familiarity with competitors’ strategies is generally low. P G R O U Knowing Your Competitors Pays Off H Organizations with a Strategic IT Plan were more familiar with the IT strategies of their nearest competitors than those without. Competitor Profiles Understanding how your competition is using technology to gain a competitive advantage will provide you with a point of reference against which you can benchmark your department’s performance. In some cases. However.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Recognizing the business ramifications of new technologies and trends should be the responsibility of company business executives. C I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R Page 80 . but use of a plan appears to drive some investigation of competitors’ IT strategies and departments. updating executives on new opportunities and potentials are your responsibilities.

line managers. Now it is time for you. Be bold! Try not to worry too much about what can be done in the short term. Do You Have Your Act Together? Your information technology department has a critical role to play at this stage of strategic IT planning. governance practice (if you have any) to an industry maturity model. senior managers. opportunities and threats (SWOT). Compare your current entirely dictated externally. By documenting your company’s strategic objectives. Through the first three stages of this methodology. as well as its market and core competencies. By examining and documenting organizational infrastructure. H R E S E A R C H G R O U Now comes the fun part. The particulars of what can actually be accomplished short. • Step 1 – Analyze IT Strengths and Weaknesses Review your current IT situation asking tough borders of the IT department. you will begin the process of proposing a new IT situation. This is your opportunity to look at the future and think about how IT can make a difference. want to be in a position where your future is and goal setting. weaknesses. Formulate a set of key questions to get the mental wheels turning. current systems. While strategic IT planning goes beyond the Step 2 – Brainstorm Technology Opportunities Hold a brainstorming meeting (or meetings) involving your strategic planning group as well as IT staff. you also don’t questions about how performance. Where You Need To Be. to set your sights on the future. you have begun to construct a picture of where your organization wants to go. you have focused on the past and present of your organization and its use of Information Technology. The department can also be a valuable resource for evaluating and scoping out details for IT ideas provided by stakeholders in other departments. alignment. and special applications users.Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation Stage To this point in the methodology you have gathered information on two important issues: • Where You Are. and current projects you should now have a solid understanding of your current situation and an excellent starting point from which you can benchmark future endeavors. 4 P . medium. power users. Now you have to look at how IT can enable that successful future organization. Your department will be expected to provide leadership in pitching new IT initiatives that can be tested against strategic priorities. and long term will be addressed in the next stage. Conduct a analysis of current strengths. and your steering committee. Page 81 I N F O ~ T E C In this stage.

........................2 IT Governance Maturity Model ........................ 88 Stage Summary..................................................... 83 Step 2 – Brainstorm Technology Opportunities .........4 Future IT Options Questionnaire ..............................................1 Questions to Focus Discussion ...........................................................................................................................................................Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 3 – Document Your Results Document your final recommendations for the future as approved by your planning group........... 90 Background > The Art of Brainstorming ........................ 86 Step 3 – Document Your Results ... 91 Brainstorm of One (Brainwriting) ...................................... 94 4................ Use diagrams and charts as much as possible and remember to continually relate your recommendations to the business goals of the enterprise......................3 SWOT Analysis ................. 105 4.............................6 Summary of Strategic Objectives ........................ 125 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S Page 82 ............................................ 124 4................................................................................... In This Stage Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation ... 96 4..................7 Summary of Strategic Directions ........................................................................................... 114 4.......................5 Brainstorming Tool...... 98 4..................................................... 92 E A R C H G R O U P Workbook Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation ..................................................................... 121 4............. 81 Step 1 – Analyze IT Strengths and Weaknesses ..

The Board Brief on IT Governance. After amassing the information in Stage 3. which is based on Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT). It is about making sure that the work being done is most effective toward the organization achieving its goals. begin by asking tough questions. Encourage steering group members to share the questions with their constituents and gather their feedback. ü Benchmark Current IT Management Practices Against “4. if a particular department has forged a productive relationship with an external IT service provider. A R C H G R O U . Be sure to consider the SWOT for all IT being used in the organization. But strategic planning and governance is not about volume or even the quality of work being done.2 IT Governance Maturity Model”.2 Governance Maturity Model”. weaknesses. opportunities and threats of IT in your enterprise. the strengths and weaknesses of that relationship should be considered as part of the IT SWOT analysis. This document contains a set of questions that will help members of the group focus on key issues of strategy and IT governance. While the IT department will likely play the largest role in the IT SWOT analysis of the enterprise. This will help you map out what needs to happen in the short and long term to improve Strategic IT governance. To get at the issue of effectiveness. not just that which is the responsibility of the IT department.Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation Agility Tip: Keep the Focus External This is not a referendum on the effectiveness of the IT department. don’t forget to address and analyze how IT is being used throughout the organization to advance the corporate goals you documented in Stage 2. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E What You Need To Do ü Distribute “4.1 Questions to Focus Discussion” as well as “4. Analyze the strengths. opportunities and threats faced by enterprise IT. notes that asking the tough questions about IT is the necessary first step in developing Page 83 Step 1: Analyze Strengths And Weaknesses Objectives: • • Review your current situation to identify specific issues of strategy and governance.1 Questions to Focus Discussion” to members of your steering group. weaknesses. Analyze your current level of IT Governance against this governance maturity model. you and your planning team may be amazed at the sheer volume of IT work being done.3 SWOT Analysis” to further flesh out the strengths. ü Analyze all IT initiatives. Use the tool “4. ü Conduct a directed SWOT analysis with members of your steering committee. Discuss everybody’s answers to “4. For example.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance the outcome measures. N F O ~ The Governance Maturity Model The introduction to the Strategic IT Planning and Governance methodology states that IT governance refers to formal high level processes and structures for IT strategic planning. The model looks like this: Page 84 I . and strategic objectives that need to be set.1 Questions to Focus Discussion”. prioritization. Distribute the questions to your planning group and make sure they respond. decision making and performance measurement. to move toward best practices in IT Governance. Best practices and measures will be discussed further in Stage 7: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework. and are they appropriate? Is the enterprise clear on its position relative to technology: pioneer. Benchmarking your current situation against a maturity model will inform your discussion of strategic steps that you need to take. “4. key success factors and performance drivers of successful governance. Such questions would include the following: To Uncover IT Issues • P • • • • H How often do IT projects fail to deliver what they promised? Are end users satisfied with the quality of the IT service? Are sufficient IT resources. best practices. It is critical that a range of views be brought to the table.2 IT Governance Maturity Model” is based on the maturity model outlined in Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT). Before you tackle these questions. infrastructure and competencies available to meet strategic objectives? What has been the average overrun of IT operational budgets? How often and how much do IT projects go over budget? How much of the IT effort goes to firefighting rather than enabling business improvements? C G R O U R To Find Out How Management Addresses the IT Issues • • • • • How well are enterprise and IT objectives aligned? How is the value delivered by IT being measured? What strategic initiatives has executive management taken to manage IT’s criticality relative to maintenance and growth of the enterprise. early adopter. follower or laggard? Is it clear on risk: risk-avoidance or risk-taking? Is there an up-to-date inventory of IT risks relevant to the enterprise? What has been done to address these risks? T E C H R E S E A A more extensive list is included in “4. be sure to review both your corporate strategy (from Stage 2) and your current IT situation (from Stage 3).

and threats for each of these categories in the “4. G R O U P . It is through an effective ongoing strategic practice that you can move to Level 4. stating. Process and Project Management. weaknesses. IT/Business Alignment. For every category. Budget Performance. and ultimately to Level 5. but which provides little insight into the reasons why Acme is actually successful. Enter your strengths.3 SWOT Analysis” tool. or pick areas for political reasons. IT Skill Sets and Performance. Page 85 I N F O ~ T E C H R E A SWOT analysis is a simple and powerful way of analyzing an organization’s corporate capabilities. Carefully consider the information you have gathered in the previous Stages of this methodology. The temptation in completing this section is to pick some generic areas. opportunities and threats upon the key areas used in “4. “the employees are Acme’s biggest strength” is an easy answer with which nobody will disagree. spend some time thinking critically about your choices and how you can work on them. S E A R Directed SWOT Analysis C H This Strategic IT Planning and Governance methodology lays out the steps for moving to a Level 3 – Defined Process. opportunities.Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation Focus your analysis of strengths. For example. weaknesses. These processes and structures form the basis for you to establish an ongoing strategic planning and governance practice.1 Questions to Focus Discussion” these include: • • • • • Governance and Accountability.

and excited about. either incrementally or exponentially? Some brainstorming sessions will help you to determine all of the ways that technology can deliver value to your company. 1. ü Brainstorm within the IT department. In the previous step. Document ideas generated from the questionnaire.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 2 – Brainstorm Technology Opportunities Objectives: • • P Brainstorm various options for IT in the future of the organization. First. and specific application users. Distribute the same questionnaire as well as any of the ideas already on the table. generating ideas for capitalizing on technology will give you the chance to shape the way your company thinks about the IT department. Refer back to the “Ideas and Opportunities” document discussed in Step 4 of Stage 3. ü Hold brainstorming meetings with stakeholders. Getting everyone involved in. To do this. What You Need To Do ü Lay the ground rules and prepare for the future.4 Future IT Options Questionnaire” in advance to those attending meetings. we suggest having at least two meetings. Page 86 I N F O ~ . you decided who you wanted at your meeting and sent them a questionnaire to get them prepared. Involve the widest possible circle of stakeholders in the exercise. The goal in this meeting is to come up with as many different technology-related ideas as possible. you need to pull in a variety of people from your company.5 Brainstorming Tool” to document ideas coming out of these meetings and the one within your department. Use the IT Options Questionnaire to get participants thinking of how IT might fit into the company’s future. T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Brainstorming Meetings Your objective is to find the best possible ways that technology can be used to help your company. The goal in this meeting is to come up with as many different technology-related ideas as possible. Are there potential opportunities to use technology to further the goals of the business? What can be done using technology to change your company and its processes. At this point. • Make your staff accountable for coming up with new ideas to help your company. Planning ahead and getting everybody ready for the upcoming brainstorming meeting is key to having a successful outcome. Distribute “4. middle management. Use “4. power users. Meeting attendees could include: senior management. have a meeting with your own IT staff and go through the list of ideas they generated from the questionnaire.

A R C H G R O U P . debate. have a meeting (or meetings) with the broader community. somebody with a methodical/procedural bent (shouldn’t be hard to find somebody like that in IT). At this point don’t discount any ideas. without strong leadership. • • Send out your compiled list of ideas well ahead of time. don’t say that any ideas “wouldn’t work” – consider every option. Focus on determining which options provide your company with the greatest business benefit. along with a meeting agenda. Only by pushing the envelope will you come up with truly brilliant ideas. This is your opportunity to “blue sky” about ideas to reinvent the business and change your industry. Consider designating a third party to be moderator/ secretary for your sessions. However. and even disagreement. Encourage discussion. regardless of size or scope. Page 87 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E Before adjourning your meeting. In other words. • • Agility Tip: Controlling the Chaos Brainstorming sessions are a great way to both generate new ideas and to push your own thinking outside of the box. This list will be used to create the follow-up document discussed next. brainstorming sessions can get out of control and end up being counterproductive. Next.Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation By having this meeting prior to your meeting with other departments and senior management. During the meeting. Stick to your timeline as much as possible. make sure that you arrive at a list of options and potential avenues to follow. Be sure to read the background articles on brainstorming and “brainwriting” (in this Stage) for tips on sparking and leading effective brainstorms. you can save time by presenting an initial list of possible ideas that your department can undertake. brainstorm the various options that were brought up by the questionnaire. Expect this meeting to take approximately two hours. 2.

if the consensus was that your IT infrastructure is well disposed to supporting open source development. Review results from all previous meetings and cement together a list of ideas into a document that outlines a roadmap of technology options for your company. one of your objectives may be to: • “Move toward adopting proven open source tools and applications for all core technologies. Page 88 I .Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 3 – Document Your Results Objectives: • • P Create a summary of project ideas from the brainstorming sessions.” T E C N F O The list of objectives you put together here will inform the Strategic Objectives and Core IT Values sections of the Strategic Plan which you will construct at the end of this Methodology. where possible. Estimate the cost of each idea if it were to become a formal project. low). Estimated costs (high. Use “4. Hold a follow-up brainstorming meeting with your steering committee.) ü Follow-up and document. include the following information: • • • Description of option. (This includes outsourced IT projects.6 Summary of Strategic Objectives” to record and list objectives and core values. For example. Use “4.” “Continue to strengthen our relationship with key enterprise technology vendor Microsoft. ~ Projects List Your brainstorming sessions will also yield a wish list of specific projects ideas aimed at advancing the core strategies of the organization. Include.6 Summary of Strategic Objectives” form to list the overriding objectives of core values for IT that came out of both your SWOT analysis and your brainstorming sessions. For each proposed IT project. Benefit to the business. Review the ideas that come out of the various brainstorming meetings with specialists in your IT department. your analysis and brainstorming could lead to an opposite set of objectives: • • “Seek industry standard commercial tools and applications for all core technologies. and senior management is not averse to exploring this option from a cost savings point of view. Use the “4.7 Summary of Strategic Directions” to record and list all possible projects. What You Need To Do ü Review all ideas with the IT department. cost estimates for making the ideas a reality.” R E S E A R C H G R O U H On the other hand. medium.

Stage 4> Propose a New IT Situation

Estimated time to complete the option (number of months).

This list of ideas will be the basis for moving forward and ensuring that IT supports and enhances the needs of the business. Using this process to create a list of possible projects will also help when it comes time to implement because you will already have buy-in from key stakeholders.

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Strategic IT Planning and Governance

Stage Summary: Propose a New IT Situation
The results of this stage should be a “wish list” of projects that you and your planning group believe will impact the company’s competitive position. In the next stage you will measure the gap between the ideal situation (where IT projects are fully aligned with strategy) and the current situation (as outlined in Stage 2). The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 4 of the engagement. P G R O U
Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision, Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8

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Background > The Art of Brainstorming
P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C 2. Designate a Recorder: This individual will be kept very busy writing down the ideas that will be generated, and therefore should not be a participant in the actual brainstorming. 3. Discuss the Rules: There should be a defined code of conduct agreed to by all. For example, there should be no criticizing of ideas because being relaxed and thinking freely is the key. Quantity supersedes quality because it has been proven in history that the best ideas are generated when the highest numbers of ideas were being generated. 4. Delegate a Moderator: A moderator is responsible for keeping order and ensuring the discussion stays on topic and moves in a logical manner. For example, it is beneficial to build on existing ideas before new ones are tackled. The moderator can also use the following techniques to facilitate the idea generating process. • Pose an initial question that will encourage thought into what the brainstorming session should provide ideas about, or what you are attempting to solve. This presents a discussion starting point and it frames what the ideas/solutions are intended to resolve. Identify a challenge to get the discussion moving and also because people are usually programmed to respond when faced with a challenge. Utilize word association techniques to find linkages between key words that will assist in idea generation. • • 5. Regulate Time: Sessions are not recommended to go any longer than 15-20 minutes
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Brainstorming is a creative idea generating technique which results in a set of ideas from which we can choose, and it also forces us away from our everyday mode of thinking. Use this information to ensure that you make the most of your brainstorming endeavors. Although there are different methods used to brainstorm ideas, group brainstorming is still considered an important activity to promote teamwork, socialization, and opportunity to build on the ideas of others. Use the following steps to ensure that you succeed at brainstorming with a group. 1. Schedule a Meeting: Everyone has a busy schedule so make sure that you book their time in advance. Invite those who will be open to share their ideas and ensure that you have coverage from all the required viewpoints. The ideal number of participants is 4-7 members.

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Make Copies: After the session has concluded. make copies of the ideas that were generated and distribute them before the next meeting. the brainstorming meetings. “Brainwriting” occurs when one member of the group writes their idea down and then distributes the idea to others to obtain feedback and additional ideas. Ensure that you understand. Do not confuse a lull in idea generation as the end of idea generation. conformity. Make sure not to give the impression that formal brainstorming meetings are where all the thinking will happen. you want to get the most out of individual and group brainstorming. You will find that after people have had the opportunity to “relax their minds. Add and Evaluate: At the next scheduled meeting. Psychologist Paul Paulus. and outside of. A quantity of new scientific research suggests there is more to brainstorming than originally thought. then the member could become discouraged to join future groups. This allows for closer study and the ability to unearth further ideas for the next meeting. add the new ideas and evaluate the ideas that exist. Brainstorming is a method to facilitate creative idea generation. Scientists are studying cognitive processes and looking deeper into human behavior to push people to their creative heights. Groups with 4 members generated about half as many ideas as 4 individuals brainstorming individually alone. and social inhibitions. If you show no intention to use the generated ideas. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C Ideally.” additional idea generation will recommence.Strategic IT Planning and Governance without breaks. 7. 6. for example. By distributing some ideas as well as the options questionnaire in advance. Groups harbor illusions of their own effectiveness and therefore prematurely believe that they have completed the task. I Page 92 . has spent the last 14 years studying brainstorming techniques at the University of Texas Arlington Group Creativity Lab and has discovered the following: • • • Do not overuse group brainstorming as groups create distractions. you will be practicing what brainstorming experts called “brainwriting”. This technique has been proven to generate 40% more ideas than individual brainstorming. P G R O U H Brainstorm of One (Brainwriting) One of the reasons you are distributing the options questionnaire is to encourage thinking on technology options in advance of. encourage and properly use the keys to unlock the minds paralyzed by daily rituals. Solitary brainstorming is as effective as group brainstorming.

Put together a summary of the gaps identified in both Step 1 and Step 2 and chart the implications for your IT strategy of addressing those gaps. 5 P . you will be able to create a roadmap for your organization. A R Step 1 – Analyze Alignment Gaps C H G R O U It’s reality check time. Page 93 I N F O ~ T E Step 3 – Summarize and Resolve Gaps C H Assess the IT requirements of the projects and areas of investment you identified in “Stage 4: Propose a New IT Situation”.Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis Stage This Stage compares your current IT situation to the proposed situation you developed in Stage 4. In Stage 4 you were asked to blue sky a little bit about how IT might play a critical role in the future competitiveness of your organization. If you have completed all of the sections in the workbook up to this point. Look at where current IT systems and skills sets do and do not fulfill those requirements. At the time. performing a gap analysis should be a fairly straightforward process. you were advised to be bold and to not worry too much about what it might take to get there. R E Step 2 – Analyze Infrastructure Gaps S E Review the results of “Stage 2: Document Your Business Strategy” and “Stage 3: Assess the Current IT Situation” in the context of the four quadrant strategic alignment model. By taking a detailed account of what you will need in the future and then matching it against your current situation.

........... Use what is left to spark the thinking of your working group when you meet to discuss gaps.............3 IT Infrastructure Gap Analysis ........................... Drop the items that don’t directly relate (these are your pet peeves which need to be dealt with at another time)....................... 138 5......Strategic IT Planning and Governance In This Stage Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis ................................................................................4 Recommendations to Resolve Strategic Gaps........................................... 126 5................. 141 5................. 95 Step 2 – Analyze Infrastructure Gaps.............................. ............................................................................................................... 96 P Step 3 – Summarize and Resolve Gaps ..................... 128 5......................................... 98 G R O U Workbook Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis ............ 143 R E S E A R C H Agility Tips Before you meet with anybody to discuss the gaps..... Write down ten things you wish you did better.............................................. Then compare your list to corporate objectives..........2 Review Strategy to Assess Skills ................. 93 Step 1 – Analyze Alignment Gaps............. I N F O ~ T E C H Page 94 ............. take a few minutes alone to play the Devil’s advocate........1 Assess Your Alignment .... 97 Stage Summary...................................

How can information technology improve business processes that will help the company meet strategic goals? 3.a” of the tool you are asked “Outline the key parts of your IT infrastructure such as the main platforms. Sections one through four allow you to map the information you have gathered so far into the four quadrants of the alignment model.1 Assess Your Alignment” to review information about your current alignment situation and to identify gaps. what has to be done? 5. The tool is divided into five sections. software. Do your current distinguishing competencies and strategic deliverables (your answers to 3-A and 3-B) relate to future strategic priorities of the organization? If not.Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis Step 1 – Analyze Alignment Gaps Objective: • Analyze gaps between current operational goals and corporate strategy. which parts of your IT infrastructure (architecture.1 Assess Your Alignment” is based on the four-quadrant strategic alignment model. In section five you will be asked to consider a number of questions to assess how well-aligned your organization is and what gaps there may be. For example. and that the organizational infrastructure and processes are well-suited to meeting strategic goals. Use the tool “5. Tool “5. The most important part of the tool. is the final section. and skills) best deliver on functional integration with other departments and strategic fit? P Page 95 . processes. if total customer lifecycle service is a strategic goal.2 Review Strategy to Assess Skills” to identify gaps between your current IT skill sets and the requirements of business/IT alignment. in section “4. Do the current skills and processes of the organizational infrastructure (from Section 2) support where the company wants to go in terms of strategic goals (Section 1)? If not.” You should be able to complete this table with information gathered in your Stage 3 IT Assessment. What enterprise-wide technological initiatives would most benefit the strategic goals of the company? (For example. and network configurations that you support. what are the gaps? 2. from a gap analysis perspective. What You Need To Do G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H ü Review your strategic position. Use these questions as a starting point for a discussion with your steering group. hardware. 4. Use the tool “5. The questions include: 1. Assuming that your IT strategy aligns well with your business strategy. ü Relate strategy to current skills. what key technologies and tech services would go into an enterprise customer relationship management system). Review your summary of corporate strategy from Stage 2.

I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 96 . do not include a substitute for the sake of making the list look better. so that you can evaluate whether or not you currently have the capabilities and what you need to do to bridge the gap. These are your gaps. the more useful it will be when you are trying to find gaps in your current systems. Your objective should be to make your vision of the future as concrete and detailed as possible. 1. the next step is to compile the list into one comprehensive master list of IT requirements. In the second column. The gap analysis tool uses a three column approach. make a note in the third column. go through your list of future IT requirements. What elements do not fit either horizontal or vertical alignment and what elements will have to be built or bought? From this discussion use the Alignment Gap Summary to list action areas where alignment gaps might be addressed. Every time you find a future IT requirement that is not met by current systems. ü Identify the gaps. The more detailed you make your list. What You Need To Do ü Identify future requirements. 3. or are only partially met. Completing a gap analysis between your current systems and your vision of the future of IT at your company requires you to identify all of the IT requirements needed in the future. P Step 2 – Analyze Infrastructure Gaps Objective: • Analyze gaps between current infrastructure and the proposed new IT situation. In the first column. Every time you identify an IT requirement. Using the Infrastructure Gap Analysis Tool. Be honest! If there are requirements listed that are not met. write it down in a separate list. Compare them to current capabilities. identify the current system that fulfills the requirement. Use “5. 2. Go down your list. You need to determine specifically what you will need in the future. write your future requirements.Strategic IT Planning and Governance 6. by your current systems. extra work may or may not be necessary here. Depending on the level of detail you drilled down to when creating your vision of the future in the previous stage.3 IT Infrastructure Gap Analysis” to enter these requirements. After you have completed a list of requirements for each procedure. Make note of where current capabilities don’t match future requirements. Identifying the gaps is now a straightforward process.

Don’t discount any ideas yet. Use “5.4 Recommendations to Resolve Strategic Gaps. chances are you need to revisit your vision of the future of IT at your company because you have probably not set the bar high enough. Is there a project here? Carefully examine the proposals for resolving gaps. R N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A C Objective: H G R O U . Go down your list and rule these out early. Get everyone involved and think creatively. P I Page 97 Step 3 – Summarize and Resolve Gaps • Create a summary document of gaps. the requirements listed are future requirements. if you are not finding many gaps. In a meeting with stakeholder(s). whatever the reason. just try to get as many solutions on the table as possible. What You Need To Do ü Gather strategic gaps and implications. Use “5.4 Recommendations to Resolve Strategic Gaps” in your workbook to help you document your ideas.Stage 5> Perform a Gap Analysis Remember. develop some recommendations as to how you might overcome the gaps identified in this stage. Distribute the list of gaps ahead of time so that people have time to think on their own and table ideas at the meeting. There is no point in wasting time on goals that can’t be met. Eliminate Irreconcilable Differences You are likely to find that there are some things that simply cannot be accomplished. Conversely. These could spark specific strategic project plans. Accumulate all of the implications and gaps that you have identified thus far in this stage.” ü Resolve gaps. You should now be left with a set of achievable goals. so you should expect to find a large number of gaps in your current systems.

The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 5 of the engagement. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Perform a Gap Analysis Your gap analysis should yield a solid list of possible actions that will get you there from here. It should also help identify the things you are doing right – those projects and processes that are already helping achieve competitive advantage. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 98 . P G R O U Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision.

Use the guidelines for the organization vision statement in Stage 2 when preparing the vision statement corporate IT. Similar to the core values you documented for your organization. Page 99 I N F O ~ T E Describe what needs to be done to achieve the future IT situation documented in Stage 4. within your company. An IT strategy and governance structure that is exclusive to one department (IT) leaves a space for other departments to chart their own IT courses – a practice that could have disastrous results. Enterprise vs. will help you later when you are evaluating and prioritizing the projects in the decision-making Since the IT department is the primary mover framework. it is important that your corporate IT vision extend beyond the IT department. it stands to reason that your departmental vision will be closely aligned (if not synonymous) with a corporate vision. Your IT core values represent the standard axioms by which IT is applied across the organization. C H R E S Step 1 – Hold A Vision Meeting With Stakeholders E A R With a firm grasp of your company’s business objectives – and having brainstormed various ways that IT can enable them – now is a good time to establish an overall strategic vision for IT in your organization. in advancing IT strategy. strategic IT core values are the set of beliefs or philosophies that guide strategic IT decisions. However. as a whole. Step 3 – Propose a Governance Structure The strategic IT vision applies to all strategic level IT decisions across the organization. Setting a clear direction though there will be obvious overlap. It will also help focus the entire company on specific IT goals.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model Stage 6 Step 2 – Establish a Strategic IT Vision For more see the articles on “One Vision For All” and “Reigning In Rogue IT” in the background section for this stage. It is not specifically about establishing understanding of the role that IT can play an operational vision for your IT department. A good enterprise IT strategy will align closely with your corporate strategy and vision. Department Vision All of the work you have completed thus This section focuses on an enterprise IT far should help you to arrive at a firm vision. Propose a charter for this group that draws a line from vision and objectives to specific actions. C H G R O U P . The IT Steering Committee is a cross-functional committee for the on-going application of strategic priorities to all IT projects.

......................... If your company has a vision statement....... Individuals and committees will spend hours trying to get the wording perfect.......... 99 Step 1 – Hold a Vision Meeting With Stakeholders ............ 109 H G R O U C Workbook Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model ...................... 151 6.................2 Strategic Objectives List ..............................................................................................................1 IT Vision Meeting Agenda........................................... 152 6............ I N F O ~ Page 100 .............................................................................................4 IT Vision Statement ................................................ 105 Reigning In Rogue IT.......... inserting technology-specific points........................................... 149 6................... 147 6....................................... 106 Building Your Steering Committee..... 154 T E C H R E S E A R Agility Tips: Forget the Poetry The vision statement development should not take a long time....................................................... 150 6............3 IT Core Values................................ 102 P Step 3 – Propose a Governance Structure................. 103 Stage Summary......Strategic IT Planning and Governance In This Stage Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model ............................ use it as a template.............. 104 Background > One Vision for All..................... a workmanlike statement that covers the bases of what you hope to achieve is more important.............................5 Steering Committee Charter.... 101 Step 2 – Establish a Strategic IT Vision .......................................... Forget the poetry................................

Use worksheet “6. Meet with your IT strategy committee. Consider the options that came out of your earlier brainstorming sessions. however.1 IT Vision Meeting Agenda” to review the corporate strategy. It is important to develop a vision and mission for strategic IT . develop statements that capture how various IT options can improve the competitive position of the organization and or the services it provides. IT core values are the set of beliefs or philosophies that guide strategic IT decisions. that you or a sub-group within the IT department can’t do some “brainwriting” (see background to Stage 4) by circulating some draft vision statements and objectives prior to the meeting. The vision exercise should be seen as growing out of your strategic planning process.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model Step 1 – Hold a Vision Meeting With Stakeholders Objective: • Meet with your strategic planning group to devise a vision and mission for corporate IT. do the following: 1. The hardest part of creating your strategic objectives will likely be the wording. ü List strategic core IT values for the company. Participants should not feel like they are building from scratch. Give ample time for this meeting and keep the tone positive.3 IT Core Values” to document your results. At the meeting. Meet with the IT stakeholders in your strategic planning group. 2. as established in Stage 2 as well as the list of IT options developed in Stage 4. Invite participants to reflect on all of the material that you have gathered to date and contemplate the ways that IT is going to be able to best help your company. What You Need To Do ü Review your corporate vision and future IT situation. Begin by reviewing the company vision and mission statements.2 Strategic Objectives List” to support this exercise. yet specific enough to be meaningful. Similar to the core values you documented for your company as a whole. It can be difficult to create strategic objectives that are broad enough to encompass the goals you have set. Use a white board or easel to record objectives. ü List strategic objectives for IT. As a committee. By this point in the process everybody has already given considerable thought to the corporate agenda and where IT resources might help advance that agenda. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 101 . Use “6. 3. This does not mean. It is important to keep the broader constituency in the loop. Make sure everybody is focused on that vision. Use worksheet “6. Narrow down your list into five to seven specific objectives. It may be helpful to read the vision aloud.

consider your scope definition from Stage 1 as well as your commitment to alignment. 2. Your IT vision statement should reflect your vision of what IT might do for the organization in the future. Some examples of core values could include: 1. All IT projects in this class must have demonstrable benefit to advancing the corporate mission. Consolidate the various IT value statements into one vision statement. anyone can place an order from anywhere in the world. Others will state the same principle more than once. Page 102 . It should therefore be viewed as a critical enterprise resource. administrators can manage storage capacity globally. We are committed to maintaining a unified standard for enterprise architecture across the organization. Information technology plays a critical role in achieving our strategic objectives and in enabling critical processes across the organization. IT projects involving an investment of $10. 3. Some of the statements will overlap. P A R C H G R O U E Step 2 – Establish a Strategic IT Vision Objective: • Draft an IT vision upon which you can base future strategic decisions.4 IT Vision Statement” to support this exercise. A good vision is both inspiring and attainable. 4. Make sure that everybody agrees to the vision statement.000 or more should be approved by the IT governance body. On a separate white board or easel page. your core IT values are the set of beliefs or philosophies that will guide your strategic IT decision making. list some core values of corporate IT. • • • List some broad statements that reflect the values and goals of these lists. Work out a final draft of the vision statement as a group.Strategic IT Planning and Governance 4. and so on). Similar to the core values you documented for your company as a whole. Use the worksheet “6.g. For your list of core values. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S Your IT vision should describe what the future will look like in terms of functionality and operations (e. What You Need To Do ü Create an IT vision statement for your organization. Devise a single statement that covers off all the main points in your list.

you should still get written commitment from the chief executive that this group shall continue to oversee strategy-level IT decisions. S E A R C H G R O U Agility Tip: Formalize the Informal In this stage you are basically proposing that the planning process used thus far be made permanent. A steering committee is absolutely critical to on-going strategic IT planning and decision making. What You Need To Do ü Establish and build consensus around a steering committee. could include the following: • The committee shall review all proposals for IT investments with projected costs over a determined monetary threshold. Neither are they.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model Step 3 – Propose a Governance Structure Objective: • Establish the terms of reference of a governance steering committee. as stated in our example steering committee charter. If you are a small organization. focused on aligning IT with corporate objectives. at the other extreme. The mission of this committee. It therefore stands to reason that strategic decisions should be made in a forum which is broadly representative. you have recognized that strategic IT is bigger and broader than any one department. and your planning committee is an informal group of three or four people. The steering committee has the authority to reject any proposal which it deems not to have made a sufficient business case or which does not significantly contribute to the strategic goals of XYZ Company. The steering committee should have broad representation and be promoted as the main body for IT analysis and investment decisions at the strategic level. and answerable directly to the senior executive. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E • • • In following this strategic IT planning process. These include cost/benefit analysis and clear calculation of Return on Investment (ROI). As was stated earlier in this methodology. All proposals must include clear definitions of business measures and benchmarks of progress. All proposals must be reviewed and approved for technological merit by the IT department. steering committees are not a replacement for the IT department.5 Steering Committee Charter” to establish the terms of reference of the steering committee. Page 103 . This includes proposals from within IT services as well as proposals from other departments that have a significant IT component. Use “6. You will know how serious your organization is about strategic IT when you see how serious it is about a steering committee. a rubber stamp for IT department plans.

Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. You should have these nailed down before you proceed to the next stage: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework. and how you can go about getting there. In this stage you are formally stating your vision for strategic IT development as well as a set of formal rules for IT decision making. where want to be.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model You now should know where you are. The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 6 of the engagement. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 104 .

Page 105 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . (In the case of non-profit organizations that were surveyed. the use of “strategic IT planning can improve organizational competitiveness and therefore should be seen as a priority for the entire organization and not just the IT department.) Organizations with annual revenue of U. Helping the organization achieve its strategic goals and making the organization as a whole more competitive or effective. The IT department should be the lead unit in developing a corporate IT strategy and is the key developer and enabler for strategic level IT projects. a corporate-wide IT strategy and governance structure does not mean that the IT department’s role is somehow diminished or marginalized. however. Info-Tech Research Group has found that organizations that utilize SITP are more likely to view the IT department as a strategic weapon. with nearly 80% reporting an increase in competitiveness or effectiveness due to the implementation of the IT plan.” department (Use of Strategic IT Planning In Medium-Sized Enterprises). Fifteen percent responded that the use of SITP has resulted in significantly increased organizational competitiveness.S. is the key goal of strategic IT planning. However. it is equally important for all your departments. “effectiveness” was substituted for competitiveness. According to Info-Tech Research Group. while organizations not utilizing SITP are more liable to view their IT departments as playing a support role. $0 to $100 million were most likely to realize this benefit.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model Background > One Vision for All The strategic IT vision that is derived from this stage in the methodology should encompass IT as it is applied across the entire enterprise. This is consistent across all industry segments. The IT department obviously has the greatest stake in this vision. Sixty-five percent of organizations utilizing strategic IT planning (or SITP) indicated that having the plan resulted in at least somewhat increased competitiveness of their organization.

It might solve an immediate problem. but the costs of reformatting and correcting that data will add considerably to the cost of the CRM project. So they go ahead and do it themselves using their own IT experts or by outsourcing the project. but it might also not be suitable to scale up to provide enterprise-wide solutions. How do you deal with these shadow or ghost projects? See them as symptomatic of the need for a sound and inclusive IT governance structure. I N F O ~ T E C H R • Page 106 .Strategic IT Planning and Governance C H G R O U P R Reigning In Rogue IT “Rogue IT” projects – projects launched and funded by departments outside of the scope of the IT department – can become a costly long-term headache for the company. Why should you care? Here are three good reasons: • The Solution Might Not Scale. Bad Data/Inconsistent Format Costs. They also feel that central IT cannot. or will not. the marketing department may have customer data from its own project that could benefit a new CRM package in sales. E S E A Rogue IT Scenario Here is the situation: A department feels that a new system will help them achieve business goals cheaply and more efficiently. When enterprise initiatives are taken down the road. Data formats may end up being inconsistent with other enterprise IT projects and data quality that is “good enough” for the rogue project may not be good enough for other applications. For example. Overall organizational IT goals are probably outside of the scope of the narrow rogue project. the departmental solution may have to be re-tooled or replaced – an additional cost of the project. support a project to develop the system. What is the problem with doing that? It shows initiative and a willingness to move quickly to embrace an innovative solution.

Many an IT manager has been nicknamed Dr. as an opportunity rather than a threat. 2. and the justifications not communicated. you can’t just complain about rogue IT projects and petition higher-ups to make them stop.) What Can Be Done? The CIO Insight feature “Rooting Out Rogue IT” notes that “ghost IT is being seen as a symptom of poor technology management and a sign of chronic communications problems between IT and business units. The committee must approve all projects above that threshold. You must take responsibility and exercise leadership. 3. However. and how it might positively or negatively impact customer relations. • 1. All IT spending. “There is no money for this. Add to that the spending by IT departments fixing problems that might be created by rogue IT (such as paying for eventual replacement systems or for fixing nonstandardized data. All they know is that their project is “not a priority”. other departments don’t know what IT is up to or why certain projects are more important than others. No” Syndrome. Manage Expectations Both Up and Down the Line. The steering committee should involve key department representatives as well as senior administrators. Require Committee Approval for All Major IT Projects. It simply is not fair to force the CIO or IT manager to make these decisions alone. Lack of an effective IT governance structure and communication between IT and other departments leads to conditions that breed rogue IT projects. you remain responsible for total IT spending. No. Set a projected cost threshold. It is one thing to involve Page 107 I N F O Treat rogue IT projects. or if the IT department has to spend to rescue a rogue IT project gone bad. Rogue IT represents IT spending beyond your control. Senior management pressures departments to be more efficient. Forrester Research predicts that 5 to 15% of corporate technology spending is due to non-IT sponsored projects. while also pressuring IT to spend less. and there is no accountability for the disconnect. or the threat of such ghost projects. strategic alignment. IT spending decisions have enterprise-wide impact. Meet with senior decision makers and press for the following: ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . as CIO. needs to be more closely and accountably linked to corporate strategic and spending goals.” Of course. Each project should be judged on criteria such as cost/benefit. it will be on your head. by the IT department or otherwise. These include: • The “Dr. if they do go ahead. “Just Do It Anyway” Syndrome. Line managers are confronted with the message. they get criticized down the road for adopting non-standard IT solutions. When IT investment decisions are made in a vacuum.” In other words. Establish an IT Steering Committee. If these projects cost more than expected.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model • Off-the-Books Spending. but do it anyway.

The IT manager manages his or her department. as well as between senior management and line managers. It is also important to manage the expectations of senior management. Greater sophistication implies that managers are “aware of the firm’s long-term strategic plans. 17 No. Vol. the firm’s future strategic plans are explicitly included in IS planning. 3. Rogue IT projects happen when departments and project leaders feel they must move forward with a project even though they don’t have the support of central IT. an IT steering or governance committee is not: • A replacement for the IT manager or management team of the IT department. give business direction to IT activities. The three roles are: 1. A complaints clearing house. and “ensure IT is run as a business. The steering committee helps set priorities for IT investment and evaluates how well the entire organization is progressing in meeting strategic goals. IT Boards. They must have the power to say another project has higher priority. It also noted that the roles that steering committees play also impacts on “sophistication” and that firms should carefully define that role in the interest of getting the most benefit from steering committees. which guide and approve IT strategy. and IS performance is evaluated based on contribution to the firm’s overall objectives. A “rubber stamp” for the IT department. and prioritize IT activities. This is a situation that you can use to push a responsive IT governance plan. This is a symptom of poor communication between IT and other departments. Policy Committees. P As was stated earlier in this methodology.Strategic IT Planning and Governance departments in decision making and get their support for IT decisions. which are involved in strategy implementation and creating policies and procedures associated with IT planning. Leadership sometimes means saying no to the boss (with the ability to justify that position). G R O U • C R H E A • Steering Committees Work A 2000 study of “The Effects of MIS Steering Committees on Information Technology Sophistication” (Journal of Management Information Systems. which formulate IT department strategy. Management Sophistication was defined as “management maturity” or effectiveness of the management function. The study results indicated that “presence of IT steering committees indeed helps enhance the level of IT management sophistication within firms”. The study found that steering committees do indeed improve the effectiveness of IT management across the organizations surveyed.” I N F O ~ T E C H R E S Page 108 . 2. Steering Groups. The committee is not the place to air the latest problems a department is having with their technology or with the IT department. They are not there simply to communicate the latest decision by the IT managers. The committee must be able to gauge the business impact of various proposed IT projects. 2) surveyed 270 IT managers in the Financial Services industry. control and manage IT units.

Building Your Steering Committee G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Steering committees can be large or small depending on the size and complexity of the organization. rather than a technology case. Steering committees can also have sub-committees or working groups. Start with a small core group. 1. there may be a networking working group or a Web working group. This prioritization exercise has a number of benefits: • • At budget time you will be able to set spending priorities based on broadly based recommendations. 4. The steering committee shouldn’t be bogged down with small projects (even though some small projects will yield big returns. Set a cost figure above which projects must be reviewed and approved by the steering committee. Establish a monetary threshold for projects. Additional ad hoc experts can be brought in on a project-by-project basis. 3. Other departments will be able to see their IT demands in the larger context of strategic plans. At the very least your steering committee should include a representative from Finance and Human Resources as well as representatives from key business driving departments and yourself as head of IT. In addition to reviewing and recommending projects for IT investment. and at least understand (though maybe not agree with) the rationale behind decisions to proceed with one project over another. For our purposes. the committee should also be tasked with prioritizing all of the on-going projects (or approving a prioritization that you come up with). Prioritize projects based on Strategic Alignment and Return on Investment. Page 109 . For example. we are looking mainly at the Steering Group with the policy function as a possible subset. with one or another dominating. P Your steering committee should have a regular set of meetings. Establish project benchmarks. Here are some tips for establishing your first steering committee. Make sure that project proposals are lined up ahead of time and that the business benefits are clearly stated. The committee should also approve a detailed project charter for each investment.Stage 6> Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model The study also notes that the three are ideal groups and in reality. 2. IT committees can have a mix of these roles. Project plans should also have clear benchmarks by which the committee monitors progress. perhaps once a quarter or twice a year. Each project should be brought to the committee as a business case.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 110 .

Roger Enrico. The last step is budgeting future performance levels.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework When you are faced with a decision. Step 4 – Prioritize Your Projects Use a three-tier approach to prioritizing your projects. These include: Page 111 I N F O Goal setting and measurement are only two steps of the cycle. R C H You have identified the gap between where you are and where you want to be. CEO of PepsiCo Stage 7 Step 3 – Identify Your Options Begin identifying your options by taking a high level approach. the best thing is to do the right thing. G R O U P . Using your gap analysis from Stage 5. group together functions that you think can be fulfilled by a specific IT project. By the time you have completed this stage. You have also established a governance structure that identifies a strategic vision and incorporates a steering committee. budgeting next year’s information becomes much easier. R E Step 1 – Set Strategic Goals and Measures S E These are the steps in this section: A Translating your strategy into some tactical and operational goals is the objective of this stage. ~ T E Step 2 – Perform a Budget Analysis C H Begin the process of turning your strategy into action by setting some clear goals for corporate IT. After you have gathered some actual information on this year’s budget. We have divided it up into four steps. you will have a prioritized list of projects for the upcoming year. Now it is time to make some concrete recommendations and determine a course of action. the next best is to do the wrong thing and the worst thing to do is nothing. Our Project Ranking Framework is designed to provide you with a robust prioritization process that ensures that your department’s projects are aligned with the objectives of the business. This takes the work you did in the previous stage – Propose a Strategic Vision and Governance Model – and turns it into some actionable objectives for the upcoming year. Each step builds on the previous.

...... Once you have finished this section you will have a plan that establishes the direction for the IT department for the upcoming year and clearly explains how you will achieve your objectives....... 125 Financial ............ 124 Background > Types of Goals IT Should Set ................. 129 IT Governance Goals ...................................................Strategic IT Planning and Governance • • • Info-Tech Project Matrix Info-Tech Priority Index Info-Tech ROI Calculator G R O U P This is the last step in creating your Strategic IT Plan................................................................................................... 133 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Page 112 ............................................... 126 Technology Operations............... 120 Stage Summary........... 116 Step 3: Identify Your Options................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 111 Step 1: Set Strategic Goals and Measures .................... 125 Organizational Goals ............................ 130 Getting Buy-In for Your Goals............................... 132 Dealing with Budget Cuts ............ 113 Step 2: Perform a Budget Analysis............................................. 128 Customer Service Goals............ 117 Step 4: Prioritize Your Projects............................................................................................................................................................................ 131 Using Your Budget as a Management Tool ............................. Stage 7: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework ........................................

.......................4 Budget Summary..........................................8 Info-Tech Project Ranking Framework .............. 184 G R O U I Page 113 7.......................................................9 Prioritized List of Projects .......... 174 7........ How you do it (make decisions) is important...... But more important is consensus on how it will be done from now on............ 156 7..................... Worry about getting that consensus more than on the details of the framework – these will continue to develop over time.................................... In this Stage you are agreeing on a common language for expressing the strategic value of IT projects... 172 7..................... 173 7...2 Balancing IT Measures.......................... 176 7...................................................................................Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Workbook Stage 7: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework . 165 7..............................1 IT Strategic Goals............................... 161 7......6 Business Case Template .............................7 Comprehensive Project List ......... 171 This Stage is the foundation of all future strategic planning and decisionmaking............. 158 7................................3 Budget Analysis Worksheets ...5 Analysis of Available Options ............. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A Agility Tip: Consensus On Procedure R C H P .....................................................................................

Use these SMART criteria to help you establish departmental goals. and state the expected result. While not all goals fit into the SMART formula. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U The SMART technique for goal setting is fairly well known. Setting goals is critical for the on-going success of any IT department. Specific: The goal must be clear. it’s an excellent starting point that addresses the key characteristics most goals should. you must set goals. Give each goal pecifi a clear start and end point. Use the example scorecard “7. 58 percent of IT managers either didn’t set goals or didn’t measure their performance towards goals. Measurable. according to one TechRepublic Survey. measure your performance towards these goals. based on your new vision and objectives. and translate the goals into documents like budgets and job descriptions. Establish measures for ensuring that goals are achievable. ü Establish clear measures for each goal. Take the work you did in the previous stage – Propose a Strategic IT Vision and Governance Model – and brainstorm some actionable objectives for the upcoming year. and limit your number of goals to four to seven. Take a balanced scorecard approach to creating sets of measures for your strategic IT goals. List your goals in the worksheet “7. Relevant. I Page 114 .2 Balancing IT Measures” as the basis for your own scorecard. understandable. What You Need To Do ü Start turning your strategy into action by setting some clear strategic goals for enterprise IT. To be a successful IT manager. Use SMART (Specific.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Step 1 – Set Strategic Goals and Measures Objectives: • • P Establish strategic goals for IT.1 IT Strategic Goals”. Attainable. and Timely) criteria to help clarify your goals. Focus is critical to achievement. However.

• • • The Balanced Scorecard The Balanced Scorecard (BSC) combines traditional financial measures with supplemental measures such as gauging innovation and customer satisfaction. Remember that you can always make changes. and timebound. Here are some common pitfalls to avoid. Customer Perspective: Customer retention. including your staff. Overly strict adherence to goals can inhibit adaptability and learning. Financial Perspective: Traditional financial measures such as profitability. 3. Relax. but still be realistic and within your departmental or organizational capabilities. Relevant: The goal must be clearly derived from. Plan execution of your highest ranked goal first – this way. • Do not set goals for others. Much of the work done in IT is in support of other departments. organizational strategic goals. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A Knowing how to set SMART goals is only the first step. Be sure to include goal review and revision in your milestones. Know their business. and adding elements to your goals is often the responsible thing to do. Attainable: The goal should move you beyond your comfort zone into new growth areas. Only set goals after you have discussed priorities and implications with those that they affect. deleting. Objectives and measures are set from four perspectives: 1. In fact. Not all goals can be made specific. Internal Business Processes Perspective: Processes instituted to meet or exceed customer expectations. Aiming for perfect goals can paralyze you. not perfect. and harmonized with. measurable. Build in milestones to help break goal achievement into manageable tasks and help you identify problems earlier. Prioritize your goals against organizational objectives before creating plans for accomplishing them. 2. and sales growth. The goal-setting process itself contains a few traps of its own. Learning and Innovation Perspective: How the organization and its people grow and change to meet new challenges. changing. 4. you can ensure that sufficient resources are allocated to your most important target. Timely: The goal must be tied to deadlines and put into a timetable in order to prevent delay of activity. Make sure senior management is committed to supporting stated IT goals beyond the current year. and market research. Stay away from goal attainment at the expense of flexibility and growth. Remember that many IT projects can run well over a year in length. Avoid rigidity. Set your sights on being reasonable.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Measurable: The goal must stipulate quantitative and/or qualitative measures to help you determine if the goal has been achieved. revenue. Beware of Goal-Setting Pitfalls Page 115 R C H G R O U . customer satisfaction. which effectively overshoots most goal-setting timelines.

Page 116 I N F O ~ T E C . 1.3 Budget Analysis Worksheets” to review your current and projected budget.pubs/ai98089. ü Summarize your budget. Use the actual performance information you gather to help set your departmental budgets (both capital and expense) for next year. Goal setting and measurement are only two steps of the cycle. which has strong executive buyin. What You Need To Do ü Perform a high level analysis of the IT budget. Is there a strategic vision? A scorecard doesn’t provide you with a vision.Strategic IT Planning and Governance The balanced scorecard and sample measures provided in “7. Use “7. and business/IT alignment is a strong focus of your planning . 2. For your BSC to have a hope of success. Use “7. The last step is budgeting future performance levels. Advocates of the BSC method agree that a BSC without a strategic planning vision is next to useless. This information will go into your Strategic Plan document.gov/special.If you have followed this methodology so far. If there is no vision. Do your initiatives and measurements tie into your strategy? If initiatives and measurements don’t link to strategy. 3. there is no way to apply measures. Your vision has been created through an inclusive process. You can download the complete guide from: http://www. Performing this analysis will give you insight into where the money is going and where it may need to go in the future to support strategic initiatives.4 Budget Summary” to summarize key points of your budget that are germane to the strategic planning process.pdf P BSC and Strategic Planning. R E S E A R C H G R O U H Step 2 – Perform a Budget Analysis Objective: • Analyze the budget implications of meeting strategic objectives. answering yes to the above should be a no-brainer. an Executive Guide of the Accounting and Information Management Division of the US General Accounting Office. budgeting for next year becomes much easier. you’ve expended resources on activities that won’t contribute to the success of the organization as a whole. After you have gathered some actual information. Does the scorecard have executive buy-in? Without buy-in on strategy and objectives you can’t set measures that will have an impact. you should be able to answer in the affirmative to the following questions.2 Balancing IT Measures” are derived from Measuring Performance and Demonstrating Results of Information Technology.gao.

Nonetheless. Begin identifying your options by taking a very high level approach. You can probably begin by doing some research on the Internet. ü Analyze the options. For example. your final recommendations should be clear. Meet with your planning group and review the business cases. Once you have done this. take your understanding a step deeper by analyzing each of the options. as the IT manager. Do some research and determine options and their respective vendors. Draft specific recommendations for inclusion in your group’s Strategic Plan document. and fit with your company’s overall business strategy. you will probably have to send out some Requests for Information (RFIs) or Requests for Proposal (RFPs). Include financial information as part of your recommendations. As applications evolve. Recommend a set of projects for the coming year. Don’t exclude any option at this stage for financial or other reasons. and the one thing that IT tends to overlook.5 Analysis of Available Options” to review all available options. logical. If you have been diligent in your option identification and analysis work. This cannot be emphasized enough since it is the one thing that senior management looks to first. What You Need To Do ü Identify your options. many of the lines of distinction between types of applications or hardware solutions and their associated functionality are being blurred. you will likely have a reasonably good sense of the types of high-level systems that you will need. begin to identify at least three options for each. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P Page 117 .6 Business Case Template” to create a business case for each project.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Showing that you have a realistic grasp of the mechanics of the IT budget will help you sell your ideas for IT investment. These are likely to be fulfilled by investing in a contact management application. you may be able to group together a number of functions that relate to customer contact. ü Create a set of business cases. List all of the high-level systems that you will be evaluating. Using your gap analysis from Stage 5. group together functions that you think can be fulfilled by a specific IT project or investment. ü Make recommendations. Step 3 – Identify Your Options Objective: • • Identify strategic options and create business cases for each. but to get to the level of detail you require to make a final decision. Use “7. Use the “7. Once you have listed a number of options for each possible solution.

000. S E A R C H Create a Set of Business Cases Use the information you just gathered to prepare a business case for making the suggested changes. outside services. duration of the project) Time required to maintain IT resources required User resources required Benefits to your company Reasons you might not want to go with this option (deterrents and risks) Compatibility with existing systems Digging Deeper: Vendor and Software Selection Methodology Info-Tech’s in-depth vendor and software selection methodology can help you dig deeper into the software selection process. For example. at a cost of $2.com.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Analyzing the Options Once you have listed a number of options for each high-level system.000 per year in labor and phone costs. go to www. Management thinks in terms of costs. we estimate that the help desk can handle 20 more customer service requests per hour. “Buying Right: Vendor and Software Selection” will help you make the right choice by providing you with a proven.e. take your understanding a step deeper by analyzing each of the options on the following dimensions: • P G R O U • • • • • • • Costs (hardware. This methodology provides you with the means to focus your efforts on core organizational needs rather than on the minor issues that can often sidetrack this type of evaluation. which will save an estimated $20.” I N F O ~ T E C H R E Page 118 . training.infotech. benefits and return on investment (ROI) – make sure that your business case takes this into account. For more. software. support) Time required to implement (i. best practice process that will walk you through all of the issues you need to consider and the potential pitfalls you need to avoid. stating that: “We have to add extra RAM to 10 desktops because PCs they are slow at running the new version of the customer service application” is not as likely to get a positive response as saying that: “By adding extra RAM to 10 desktops PCs.

not your background research. N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H Remember. Make sure that your recommendations are clear and justifiable in language that a non-technical person can understand. G R O U . these are going to be read by senior management. Once you have prepared a business case for each solution. you should still prepare an executive summary of your findings and include it at the beginning. A good business case is no more than two to three pages in length. You don’t need to include every detail your research uncovered. the objective here is not just to make recommendations – you have to sell your recommendations to senior management. the final step is to make some recommendations. Make a Recommendation Preparing a complete set of business cases gives you an objective way of analyzing the various solutions available. Keep them clear and concise. This is where the work you did on documenting and understanding your company’s business strategy will pay off by ensuring that your suggestions fit with the overall goals of the company. Add value through your insight and analysis. Any questions or concerns will be directed towards your decisions. In your business case. Remember. include the following information: • • • • • • General description of the high-level system Identified options Benefits Costs Risks Recommendation P I Page 119 If management has asked you to include all of your background research.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Prepare a business case for each solution.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance

Step 4 – Prioritize Your Projects
Objective: • Create a prioritized list of projects for inclusion in the annual strategic IT plan. What You Need To Do G R O U ü List all projects that are currently in progress. Refer to the work you did in Stage 3 documenting your current IT projects. Use “7.7 Comprehensive Project List” for this purpose. ü Add to your Comprehensive Project List all of the possible projects that your department can pursue in the upcoming year to the list. Do not exclude any project for any reason. The Project Ranking Framework will take care of sorting out less attractive projects. ü Use “7.8 Info-Tech Project Ranking Framework” to analyze and sort your projects into priority order. • • • Use the “Info-Tech Project Matrix” to sort projects into four distinct groups: Pursue Aggressively, Scale Down, Pursue Cautiously, and Terminate Immediately. Use the “Info-Tech Priority Index” to ensure that your projects are aligned with the objectives of the business. Use the “Info-Tech ROI Calculator” to create comprehensive return on investment criteria for each project. P R E S E A R C H

ü Use “7.9 Prioritized List of Projects” to list your top ten projects in priority order as established by Info-Tech’s Project Ranking Framework. This prioritized list is one of the central components of the Strategic IT Plan that you will submit to management.

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The first step in sorting your initiatives is fairly straightforward. Use the project matrix below to sort your projects into four separate groups. Projects should then be carried forward in their groupings and prioritized using the Info-Tech Priority Index. This framework shows the four generic strategies for IT projects: Pursue Aggressively, Scale Down, Pursue Cautiously, and Terminate Immediately:

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Contribution to Core Business (CCB)
For a more detailed definition of each quadrant of the project matrix see “7.8 Info-Tech Project Ranking Framework” in the workbook. Once you have sorted your projects into the four groups, take your prioritization a step further using the Info-Tech Priority Index.

2. Info-Tech Priority Index
Use the Info-Tech Priority Index to sort each group of projects. The Priority Index is a simple, but effective, analytical tool you can use to help you prioritize your projects. InfoTech has assigned a suggested point rating to each factor, but these can be adjusted to reflect your company’s objectives. Info-Tech Priority Index
Viability Customer Value Proposition – CVP – (0 -15) Economic And Upside Potential – EUP – (0-25) Industry Attractiveness – IA – (0-15) Fit With Company Goals/Capabilities – CGC – (0-15) Ease Of Implementation – EI – (0-15) Possibility of Missing Schedule – PMC – (0-5) Risk of Cost Overrun – RCO – (0-5) Technical Risk – TR – (0-5) Total out of 100

“Fit”

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For a detailed definition of each of the factors listed above, see the Priority Index in “7.8 Info-Tech Project Ranking Framework.” Assigning each project a rating out of 100 on the Info-Tech Priority Index is the first step in creating a prioritized list of projects. Rate each individual category separately. To Complete Info-Tech’s Priority Index: • P G R O U • • • • List all of the possible projects down the left-hand column of the Info-Tech Priority Index Template. Schedule a meeting and include all of the key stakeholders, including senior management. Hand out copies of the project list to each meeting participant. Ask them to assign rankings to each project under the criteria in the Priority Index Template. Briefly explain each project and wait until everybody has finished assigning the project a numeric ranking. By completing rankings together as a group, it allows individuals to clarify any information they need to assign a ranking. Once you have assigned a ranking for each project, ask every attendee to submit their completed Priority Index template to you. Depending on the number of projects on your list, you will want to tally and average the scores after the meeting by inputting them into the spreadsheet provided with this workbook. Once you have tabulated the scores, sort them in order of priority, with the highest scoring project listed first. Distribute the prioritized list to all meeting attendees.

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The Info-Tech ROI Calculator will provide you with one last step of prioritization. It will also force stakeholders to think through the project and identify potential risks. Info-Tech’s ROI Calculator is an Excel spreadsheet and can be found the accompanying CD-ROM with additional explanation found under Info-Tech ROI Calculator in “7.8 InfoTech Project Ranking Framework.” Use the spreadsheet to determine the ROI for each of your top projects. Input all of the necessary data for each of your top ten projects. Once you have inputted all of the costs and benefits of each project, re-sort the projects based on the expected ROI of

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Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework each project. Page 123 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . Your project with the highest return on investment should be the highest priority. Consider eliminating projects that do not meet the “2:1” Rule of Thumb. as suggested above. Make sure they understand and approve of the methods being employed and be prepared to show your work in justifying prioritization decisions. Agility Tip: Show Your Work The tools in the Info-Tech Project Ranking Framework will help provide you and your stakeholders a common language and touchstone for prioritization. make sure to at least distribute the framework to senior decision makers. then the project is not worth doing. If the benefits of your proposed solution are not at least double the expected costs. If you don’t have time to work through the framework in a workgroup setting.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance Stage Summary: Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework This stage is critical because. in addition to analyzing and recommending specific projects for the coming year. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 124 . Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision. you and your governance group are establishing practices for how strategic level IT projects will be measured and evaluated from now on. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. P The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 7 of the engagement.

Get the latest information about business goals from business managers and ask if you don’t understand something. This isn’t easy.g. Microsoft). you need to communicate them to your IT staff. IT managers can set budgetary goals such as reducing the capital budget 25%. This methodology is an important step in that process. but is critical for the success of projects that span multiple years (e. such as reducing the number of PC suppliers Page 125 N F O ~ T E 2. 1.g. reducing the toner cartridge budget 20%.g. based on the work you have completed. Below is a quick reiteration of some of the key points you should remember to ensure that your department’s goals fit squarely with the overall direction of the company.000. Purchasing Purchasing involves selecting vendors and products that meet corporate requirements. Trust can’t be won immediately. Capital budgeting is for projects and assets that will last over a long period of time. metrics. or reducing the total expense budget to $1. C H R E S E A R C H G R O U . Here are a few examples of the different sub-types of financial measures: IT goals and business goals must be continuously aligned and realigned. Remember that business goals don’t usually translate directly into IT goals. After business goals have been finalized or changed. Budgeting There are two kinds of budgeting IT managers perform: capital and expenditure. Asking questions about the business goals is a good way to test if the information has been communicated effectively. Many vendors also require long-term management and strategies (e. This point should be abundantly clear to you by now.000. management reporting). Each has different sub-types. IT managers can set a large variety of purchasing-related goals.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Background > Types of Goals IT Should Set Here are the five major types of goals you should consider setting. but IT staff should keep this information in mind when doing their jobs. e-commerce) and high-profile projects (e. Earn the trust of senior non-technical management. Below we will discuss appropriate measures for each category. and management issues. but must be built up over a period of time. Communicate business goals to all IT staff. Aligning IT and Business Goals Financial Enterprising IT managers will create and beat their own internal financial goals. such as more than one year. • • • Financial Organizational Technology Operations • • Customer Service IT Governance P I 3. Make sure the business goals are clear. Transferring high-level goals down to operational IT goals can be a lot like playing the children’s game of whispering a message to the person sitting next to you in a circle (the message gets distorted).

If you measure their output (e. you can see where new staff will be needed in the future and plan for the changes necessary in the organizational structure. These costs include both direct (e. Another staffing goal you can set is related to productivity. its manager must create an organizational structure with specific roles and responsibilities. training also costs money. you can measure their output and set productivity improvement goals.g. you can set a productivity improvement goal (e. or reducing overall TCO by 10%. 30 hours worked per week). skills become obsolete very rapidly. reducing total purchasing expense by 10%. G R O U P Organizational Goals In addition to financial goals. 100 lines of code per week.g.g.g. you can assign more work to increase productivity. For example. 40 hours worked per week).Strategic IT Planning and Governance from five to one. number of hours worked) before this change. 200 lines of code per week. if you have staff not working as hard as you think they should. your company may be integrating systems with dozens of new customers. Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Total cost of ownership (TCO) is a measurement of all the costs of purchasing and using a technology. You can set a staffing goal of having three full-time people to handle all your customers’ system issues at the end of December. TCO is a major issue for IT managers. companies can set organizational goals for their IT department. which is increasing the demands for customer system support. I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A Training Because technology changes so quickly.g. You can also set a goal of creating a new department for customer system support at the same time. As companies grow. Similarly. increasing the dollar amount of purchases from a strategic vendor by $500. If some of your current staff is under-worked. You can set TCO goals such as reducing you network TCO to $25 per user. Page 126 . the purchase price) and indirect (e. especially in the current environment of cost cutting and budget control. lines of code. Remember to agree on the consequences of not meeting the goals with your staff before starting to measure performance.000. Organizational goals relate to the people working in the IT department and how they work. and financial budgets need to be set. Here are some examples of organizational goals: R C H Staffing When more than a few people are in an IT department. (e. However. other system resources that will be used). Keeping IT staff current with the latest technologies is a necessary investment to keep your technology functioning optimally. and so on.

or no more than 10% of the initial programming time spent on debugging afterwards. but managing this is critical to the success of your IT organization and the overall company. Efficiency in the IT department can be measured by taking outputs (e. P I N F O ~ Efficiency and effectiveness are related concepts that are critically important to any activity. you can set a technical skills inventory goal of creating the inventory by December 31.g.g. total departmental costs) over time. you can set management goals for coaching employees with poor reviews. or reducing the training budget from $10. Efficiency measures whether you are doing things right.0 certified staff upgrade their certification to Windows XP certification by June 30. Efficiency and Effectiveness T E C H R Application Development Productivity E S In larger organizations.000. These companies make inventories of their employees’ skills to match their skills with the projects they have to do. Although many large organizations require semi-annual or annual performance reviews of all employees. You can set an application development productivity goal of 1000 lines of code per quarter per employee. Page 127 Programming output is a very difficult activity to measure. and effectiveness measures whether you are doing the right things.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework You can set training goals of having all your Windows NT 4. You can set a goal of an average customer satisfaction rating of 4 out of 5 (where 5 is high) and measure performance towards that goal by surveying users. You can set management and review goals for doing performance reviews for all your employees by the end of the current quarter. E A R C Technical Skills Inventory H G R O U . or adding “years of experience” to the database by the end of April. In addition. For example. the IT manager often doesn’t know every member of the department personally or what their skills are. Management/Reviews Having subordinates means that you must review their performance and manage them through problems. You can set a goal of improving the ratio of business value to IT department costs by 10%.000 to $8. business value created) and comparing them to inputs (e. An example of this type of goal would be to improve a specific employee’s evaluation from “Poor” to “Good” by the next review through coaching. smaller companies often don’t have these requirements. Effectiveness in the IT department can be measured by surveying users to determine how satisfied they are with the IT department’s work.

percent of issues resolved. support staff will respond to each inquiry in 30 minutes. T E C H R E S E A R Security Security goals are critical to protecting the company’s reputation and assets. or being able to restart operations in 24 hours after a major disaster. You can set uptime goals for the overall company and/or specific departments and applications (e. G R O U Uptime Uptime is a more technical measurement of IT operations. I N F O ~ Disaster Planning/Business Continuity Planning Business continuity planning is a critical issue for senior management today. customer satisfaction. building maintenance). and providing 99% uptime to all network users. For example. but measuring their performance is critical to managing the trade-off between costs and user satisfaction. order entry). many IT departments do not measure help desk performance on attributes like average response time. while others don’t require as much (e.g. 95% of issues will be resolved 30 days after the initial logging of the request. all financial systems will be up 99% of the time.g. Certain users require a great deal of system uptime (e.g.5 out of 5). and users will have an average satisfaction rating of 4. There are several sub-types of technology operations goals you can set: Help Desk P Most IT professionals and users are familiar with help desk operations. Security goals can include having all extra-company data communications encrypted with 128-bit encryption. during month-end. but is still critical to many users. IT managers can set goals for business continuity planning of having real-time data available in the off-site location. and so on. You can set goals for each of these metrics and offer performance guarantees (e.g. You can also set uptime goals for specific days and times (e. IT managers need to be able to offer business continuity solutions that will let the company operate normally or almost normally very quickly. you can set internal SLA goals for responding to all help desk inquiries within 30 minutes.g. Page 128 .Strategic IT Planning and Governance Technology Operations On-going operations may appear routine and boring to users and support staff. but are becoming more important at managing internal services. C H Service Level Agreements (SLAs) Service level agreements are critically important to managing external service providers. and support staff will be available 24-7). and having virus definitions updated every day instead of every week. the order entry application will be available 95% of the time Monday to Friday 8:00 – 6:00). However.

you can set a goal of getting everyone in the company to sign the Internet use policy by March 31.g.5 out of 5) or improving existing poor performance (e.g. Measuring customer satisfaction can be done informally by asking users what they think of your service or formally through surveys. IT managers must make all users sign policies that describe what behavior is acceptable.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Asset Management As IT becomes a more critical component of the organization.g. To prevent this. Active Directory to every sales employee) or higher levels of existing service to your users (e. Policies Users can do serious damage to systems in a variety of ways (e. e-mail use) or for writing new policies (e. handheld devices. higher bandwidth VPN access). You can set goals to deploy new services to your users (e.g. wireless networking). Internet use. you can set asset management goals for doing your first asset inventory by the end of December. You can set customer satisfaction goals of having certain performance ratings (e. what behavior is not acceptable. getting all new employees to sign all computer policies. 4. Page 129 I N F O ~ T E Many new services are possible with new technologies (e. improving the 2 out of 5 rating in the shipping department to 4 out of 5 by August). Here are some customer service goals: Customer Satisfaction Customer satisfaction is probably the most important measurement of how good a job you’re doing.g. or writing and distributing a wireless networking policy by September 30. hogging bandwidth with streaming media. For example. Active Directory).g. C H User Services/Levels of Service R E S E A R C H G R O U P . Customer Service Goals Customer service goals are very important because your users have more day-to-day awareness of them relative to other goals.g. or auditing all PC assets by the end of June. and what the consequences are for unacceptable behavior. For example. IT managers can set goals for getting users to sign existing policies (e. managing IT assets is becoming a strategic imperative for IT managers.g. spreading viruses).

You can set goals for how much time you spend scanning. You can set goals for what features you need to develop from this business partnership. Portfolio management means that you calculate business value for each project and determine which projects to undertake based on the amount of business value they will generate. you need to manage them as a portfolio. You can set goals to improve senior management’s understanding and/or increase their commitment to IT (e. or what you want to do with what you learn from scanning the environment. you can set a goal of making one. or when and how you want to end such a partnership.Strategic IT Planning and Governance IT Governance Goals IT governance refers to the high-level strategies and practices of IT management. E S E A Business Partnership As business requirements change. This will require a business partnership with vendor(s) to ensure that the technology meets your requirements today and in the future.g. P Business/IT Alignment Aligning IT with business goals is a critical issue for both business and IT managers. you may need to develop expertise in a specific technology that is not yet mature. T E C H R Top Management Commitment In many companies. C H R Environmental Scanning One of the most critical activities an IT manager performs is scanning the environment for critical technologies and issues that may affect the company in the future. get the VP of marketing to sponsor a CRM project by December 31). Measuring alignment can be difficult. I N F O ~ Project Portfolio Management As you start to run many IT projects at the same time. Here are some sub-goals you can make in the IT governance category: Project Approval Method/Process G R O U If you don’t have a standard methodology or tools for approving projects. but surveys of business and IT managers can be used to determine how aligned you are today and to set targets for future alignment. You can also set a goal of creating standard tools for aiding this process. Page 130 . which technologies you want to spend extra time scanning. senior management doesn’t understand and is not committed to using IT for competitive advantage.

P . You should also ask how the performance level goals can be improved and set the goals higher each review. Involve employees in selecting measurements and quantifiable performance levels. you need the specific data you gather. 4. C H 2. R 1. you need to measure your actual performance towards them. all five locations will have outsourced help desk support by December 31) and insourcing (e. This increases their ownership and lets them take corrective action as quickly as possible.g. IT managers can set goals for both outsourcing (e. Here’s how to get buy-in for your goals: E A R C Getting Buy-In for Your Goals H G R O U • Create and modify specific service level agreements (SLAs) as you learn more about what different customers want.000 lines of Java code).Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Outsourcing/Insourcing IT departments need to outsource many routine and non-strategic activities (e. Page 131 I N F O ~ T E 3. However. Otherwise. This should be a negotiation instead of you imposing expectations on them. E S • Publicize what a great job you’re doing with Before you assign goals to employees. This will give them a greater sense of responsibility and ownership in the outcome.g. Evaluate employees based on the goals you have agreed to. Map the performance expectations to their job descriptions.g. Tracking actual performance lets you do several important tasks: • • Conduct performance reviews of IT staff based on the goals you set. by December 31 the company will have hired five Java programmers and written 1. Get the employees to measure and track the results themselves. they will feel excluded from the goal-setting process and work to sabotage the results.g. to make sure they agree and are committed to them. IT departments sometimes also need to develop new competencies in new technologies (e. This requires establishing specific numeric metrics. Measuring the Success of Your Goals Once you have created goals. Change job descriptions of IT staff to match IT department goals and influence behavior. Java). help desk support).

avoid making your budget a mere extrapolation of the past . HR and finance will be able to provide you with some valuable information to help ensure accuracy. Information on projected expenses helps to assess feasibility and risk. Identify Your Variables.new anticipated projects will have a big impact on your final numbers. Getting your decision-making staff on board with the budgeting process and helping them understand that the budget will be used as a measurement tool will ensure their commitment. and secure resources in advance. which is better for forecasting. • Look at Last Year. Identify and investigate what are causing deviations from the budget and take action to either rectify or justify the differences. Look Into “Rolling Budgets. The budget can be used as a living prioritization document that differentiates between essential and non-essential activities. See if you can gain permission to include a contingency budget . Talk to the Right People. P G R O U Commitment Control Performance Evaluation H R Use the budget analysis tools in your workbook to help you identify potential line items on your IT department budget. Working collaboratively to prioritize expenditures helps gain buy in from all staff.for covering cost variances in “iffy” areas.a specific percentage of your total budget . revisit your plan four times a year. This forces you to think long term. Prepare a report and share it with your staff. HR will be able to provide accurate headcounts. Next.” Rolling budgets work by adding an additional quarter to the end of the budget as the current quarter ends. compare how well your department is faring against budget predictions. Lay your assumptions on the table to ensure everyone is on the same page. This method keeps your budget current and accurate. whereas finance can help predict the impact of seasonal variations on income.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Using Your Budget as a Management Tool Management Application Planning Risk Management Management Benefit Decision makers are forced to think through activities in detail. Compensation and performance reviews can be tied to hitting budget targets. and predict salary increases. However. benefits figures. use this plan to help you turn your budget into a useful decisionmaking document. The cost of some factors is hard to predict. Know your variables and draft several advance budgets (“flexible budgets”) that account for potential variances. Involve Others. and continually revise your projections. Prepare Quarterly Reports. Every three months. S E A C H R E • • T E C N F O ~ • • I • Page 132 . Last year’s final operating budget is your best “reality check” on actual costs.

Building flexibility into your IT budget is key. Make it your practice to understand the economic returns for the company on each line item within the budget.” Also. integrate these methods into your IT department culture so that future cutbacks won’t cause insomnia.” • • N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P . Then ask your employees to consider ways in which to maintain the business benefit of the line item while cutting costs simultaneously. Why IT Gets Cut G R O U I Page 133 IT is often the first to get slashed when an organization is facing a financial squeeze because those in IT have traditionally done a mediocre job of linking IT performance with company business objectives. This allows you to prioritize projects and protect those of high priority.Stage 7> Build a Strategic Decision Making Framework Dealing with Budget Cuts Before your CEO demands a 10% cut to your IT spending. Utilize Methodology. Make it a practice to tie IT performance with business performance measures like return on investment. economy makes this the smartest pre-emptive move you’ve ever made. If a budget cut is necessary in your organization.S. return on assets. META Group states that 80% of Global 2000 enterprises have failed in merging their IT and business strategy. build flexibility into your budget today. This way. This push toward creative thinking will have big results. you won’t be sorry when your CEO asks you to cut your budget by “Xpercent. return on equity. use these key methods to “trim the fat. Make it a practice in your IT department to identify the target line item for budgetary reductions. What should you do? • Be Prepared. • Budget Comprehension. This knowledge will allow you to foresee what would take place if a particular line item were trimmed down or cut completely. Only 20% will succeed in creating a unified business/IT strategy and establishing an architecture process that addresses the enterprise’s key business goals. and profit per employee. Show through the numbers that IT is not just a cost center. The Best Defense is a Good Offense. The downturn in the U.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P Page 134 .

S E Step 2 – Present Your Plan to Senior Management A R C H G R O U Congratulations. We also have a template that you can use to create a comprehensive strategic plan presentation. You also need to consider the organizational impact of your initiative. Promote. and Maintain Your Strategy Stage 8> Publish. seek formal approval. Step 3 – Communicate and Manage Change If your planning process has been open and broadly-based. In this stage we outline what you need to do to formally launch your Strategic IT plan. and get the ball rolling. However. You have completed the work of creating a Strategic IT Plan for your organization. Now you need to pull everything together. communication is the key. Page 135 I N F O ~ T E C H R E Present the plan to Senior Management and require its official approval. Promote. As with much in the realm of strategic planning. and Maintain Your Strategy Stage 8 Step 1 – Build Your Strategic Plan Documentation Use the Strategic IT Plan template to bring together all of the elements you have created in this process into one concise plan that can be recommended to senior management. the completed plan should not be a surprise to anybody. P . it is still important to develop a communications plan to ensure that all stakeholders are fully aware of the plan’s contents and implications.Stage 8> Publish. Executive sponsorship is critical for any strategic initiative to succeed.

...................................................... If your proudest achievement is a nice looking plan document. 190 8....................................................................................................2 Notes for PowerPoint Slide Presentation .......... 187 8................... but you still feel that the executive and IT can’t talk about strategy.......... 146 The Rollercoaster of Change.. Review your progress.... 192 ~ T E C H R O Agility Tips The end of this strategic planning methodology is not the creation of a strategic plan document............................... you still have work to do. and Maintain Your Strategy..........................3 Communications Plan Template ...........................1 Notes for the Strategic IT Plan Template................................................. 150 G R O U S E A R C H P E Workbook Stage 8> Publish.......Strategic IT Planning and Governance In This Stage Stage 8> Publish.................. 141 Background> A Guide to Killer Boardroom Presentations............................................ 142 Guide to developing a communications plan. 137 Step 2 – Present Your Plan to Senior Management.... 139 Stage Summary....................... 138 Step 3 – Communicate and Manage Change ....................... 149 Tips For Ongoing IT Strategic Governance............................................ I N F Page 136 ...... Promote.................. Promote............................ and Maintain Your Strategy.................. 143 Design the Roll-Out Plan .... 135 Step 1 – Build Your Strategic Plan Documentation ..... 185 8......................................................................... 147 Adjusting Your Current Organizational Structure...... The end of this methodology should be the creation of a permanent strategic planning process that includes a governance model and an overall goal of business/IT alignment..................

in many cases. your Strategic IT Plan is complete and ready to be proofread. The file contains a link to the shell PowerPoint presentation “8. there will be few surprises in the content of the plan for your planning group. Once you have completed the Executive Summary. costs involved. P Much of the content of your strategic plan can be derived from the workbook tools you have already completed.1 Notes for the Strategic IT Plan Template” indicates which workbook content should be incorporated into the plan. Most of the content for the plan should now be in your workbook. The final step of the plan creation process is. Page 137 . An initial set of prioritized projects that have been identified as providing the greatest strategic value to the organization. The Executive Summary is the single most important section of your plan and. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H What You Need To Do ü Assemble your strategic plan document. grammatical errors and poorly structured ideas can seriously impact your credibility and diminish the likelihood that management will approve.” A formal plan provides a tangible object that you can bring to senior management for approval and adoption of: • • The strategic IT planning procedures that you and your planning group have established including the steering committee and the prioritization matrix. and Maintain Your Strategy Step 1 – Build Your Strategic Plan Documentation Objectives: • • Create a formal strategic plan document. If your process has been inclusive. ü Circulate a draft of the plan to your planning group. it is the only section that management will actually read. Promote. Create a master strategic planning PowerPoint presentation.2 Notes for PowerPoint Slide Presentation” provides you with notes for incorporating your SITP workbook content into a comprehensive presentation. Your Executive Summary should be one to three pages long and should persuade management that your suggested plan is the best course of action for your company. paradoxically.1a IT Strategic Plan Template”. your projects. Open “8. Treat your plan as carefully as you would a resume to a prospective employer.2a Slides to Present Your Strategic IT Plan. This is a succinct summary of your entire plan with specific focus on changes or projects proposed. let alone champion. However. “8. and expected timelines. Spelling mistakes. it is still important to have unanimous approval of the document before it is presented to senior executives and the stakeholder community. “8. ü Create a master strategic plan PowerPoint presentation. to write the first page – the “Executive Summary” (also called a Management Overview) section of the template.Stage 8> Publish.

so don’t alienate and bore them by using techno-babble. Outline what will happen next. Since your document is probably fairly lengthy by now. so make sure that you have these figures handy for every single aspect of your plan. G R O U R These presentations will provide valuable backup material for communicating your strategic IT plans and processes. The PowerPoint Presentations P In addition to the strategic plan template document in Microsoft Word. highlight specific areas that they should focus on in case they do not have time to read the whole document. You may also want to cut and paste slides from one into the other to create your own presentation. The second – “1. or line workers. ü Keep your presentation short and punchy (one hour or less) and leave a lot of time for questions. Make sure to conclude your presentation by asking for formal approval of the plan. we also provide you with two PowerPoint presentations. What You Need To Do ü Send out the final version of your plan ahead of time to everybody you have invited to the presentation. Invite them to critique it and make suggestions for improvement. depending on your objective. other managers. whether it is to senior executives. They will want to talk in terms of costs and benefits.8 Convergence of Technology and Core Business Strategy” – is more focused on educating your audience about the reasons that you have completed a strategic plan for the IT department. Use either or both. Make sure that you make the time and date of your presentation clear and confirm who will be attending ahead of time. In the workbook section “8. Make sure that you give them at least a week before you need to create a final draft. I N F O ~ T E C R Page 138 . • • The first is an empty template called “8. ü Wrap up with approval and next steps.” E S E A C H H Step 2 – Present Your Plan to Senior Management Objective: • Win formal approval of the Strategic IT Plan and its recommendations.1 Notes for the Strategic IT Plan Template” you will find detailed notes suggesting how to use your workbook content to populate the slides in “Slides to Present Your Strategic IT Plan. Remember that your audience is probably not very technically oriented.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Have a draft of the plan reviewed and approved by your planning group.2a Slides to Present Your Strategic IT Plan” that you can fill out with highlights of your plan.

The plan should clearly indicate actions that need to be taken by you and others to promote and raise awareness of the plan. This should be the most enjoyable part of completing a strategic plan for IT. Do not fall into any trap that prevents you from communicating your plan with as many people as possible. Promote. Plan to mitigate the impact that strategic projects may have on your staff. It is your opportunity to get others excited about the opportunities that technology can create for your company. In addition to project milestones. For your plan to be truly successful. Your understanding of your company’s business objectives and your ability to demonstrate the ways in which your plan supports those objectives is essential in gaining support from senior management. communicating with others is something they do not feel they are particularly good at. Use “8. it is the one that most IT professionals overlook. Page 139 . Establish long term goals for Governance. It isn’t enough just to inform people of impending change.Stage 8> Publish. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P Step 3 – Communicate and Manage Change Objectives: • • • Communicate the plan to the broader community. laying out a plan with milestones is done only when requested. make sure there is a timetable in place to review the plan and develop annual revisions/additions to the plan.3 Communications Plan Template” to devise a communication strategy to promote the goals and objectives of your strategic IT plan. Prepare for change management. and Maintain Your Strategy All the work you have done thus far is not worth much if you do not communicate and sell your plan to senior management. Although this is perhaps the most important section of this entire document. ü Establish a timetable for change. you need senior management to approve and champion it. What You Need To Do ü Develop a formal communication plan for the SITP. and given to only those who request it. Creating a Strategic IT Plan has limited value if you do not communicate the end result to others. ü Prepare to manage change. To some. Make sure your strategic planning effort does not become an historical footnote. Many well-conceived IT initiatives have failed because they did not have executive sponsorship and support. To others. for a variety of reasons.

or less paperwork. Develop an implementation timeline that incorporates major milestones and actions for approvals. brainstorm how the process will look in its new and improved state. Focus on measurable value that is highly visible. Clearly identify on the timeline all items that can halt the progression of the plan. Make the Intended Outcome Clear: The goals of the anticipated change should be made clear to all those affected by the change. Nebulous or overly broad problem statements are harder to work with than more direct statements. 3. Prioritize Multiple Improvements: Often there is more than one change opportunity in play. Determine which of these to pursue at which time. P I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 140 . Consider building a prioritization matrix that measures each opportunity against established criteria. budgets. Coordinate to ensure the right people receive the right training at the right time to maximize positive effects. Consider all users of the process and how their interactions will change. Determine Costs. the next decision is when it will happen. 2. and resource requirements. Assess Your Training Needs: Training is essential when changing a process. fewer people behind the scenes.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Establish a Formal Change Management Process Follow these steps to manage your process of change: 1. Do a training assessment in conjunction with the Human Resources department. and then stick with your priority. Identify which actions may be taken concurrently and which are dependent on other elements. The new process may mean less waiting time for client support. especially if the change requires new skills or competencies. Market these benefits to the user community. Feasibility and Benefits: To help calculate the possible costs and benefits of the change. Define the Project Adequately: Clearly defining the project being pursued will help sharpen the vision. Construct a Timeline: Once you know what needs to happen. 6. 5. 4. Break the problem down into bite-sized portions.

Stage 8> Publish. Promote. In this final stage you have put together plans and materials that will help you communicate this process and the value it will create to the organization as a whole. Mission and Strategic Goals Analyze Core Competencies and Competitive Position Current IT Organizational Structure. Status Creation Of Steering Committee Scope Definition of “Strategic” Strategic IT Plan Kickoff Meeting Preliminary Report With Goals and Timeline Document corporate Vision. The following chart shows the progress of developing the plan after Stage 8 of the engagement. Hardware and Software Inventory Analysis of IT Trends Review of IT Against Governance Maturity Model IT SWOT Analysis List of Proposed Future IT Directions List of Requirements for Resolving Gaps (Roadmap) Corporate IT Vision Statement Corporate IT Governance Charter Strategic IT Goals Achievable Measures Budget Analysis Prioritized Project List Completed Strategic IT Plan Document Comprehensive Strategic Planning PowerPoint Strategic Planning Communication Plan Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Done Stage 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 Page 141 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . and Maintain Your Strategy Stage Summary: Publish. and Maintain Your Strategy By following this process you have established a framework for formulating IT strategy and making strategy level decisions about IT for your organization. Promote.

Maintain Readability: Projections aren’t as clear as on-screen visuals. follow this time management rule of thumb: • To decide on the total number of slides you should have. their socks off. and an LCD projector anybody can put together an effective presentation. O ~ N F • • I • Page 142 .Strategic IT Planning and Governance Background> A Guide to Killer Boardroom Presentations P Giving a presentation on the best of days is a nerve-wracking experience. Wordy slides are dull and distracting. • Use Arial or Times New Roman fonts only and a minimum 18point size. and round down to the nearest five. Balance Words with Images. • Organize Your Information. Plan Your Time: Allot one minute per slide. subtract 10% of that time. Limit yourself to 20 words per slide. G R O U Presentation Best Practices: 1. Use these tips to help you master the art of boardroom presentations. and two minutes for those with graphs. • Tips for Building Blockbuster Presentations With Microsoft PowerPoint. When the CEO invites you to make a presentation to the senior management group. and round down to 25. you have 30 minutes to present. You should be able to state the goal of your presentation in fifteen words or less. The most boring presentations feature a speaker reading the content of his or her own slides to the audience. When planning your presentation. S E A R C H C H R E • T E 2. your words. you need to knock.no more than five lines per slide and five words per line. not repeat. Use Slides to Hammer Home Key Points. Consider not only the information you must present. Subtract three (10%) from 30 to get 27. Presentation technology won’t save poorly organized material. but also the questions that you are likely to be asked. Speak to the audience and have the slides support. charts. Master the 5x5 rule . Use short bulleted information nuggets complemented by photos and graphics. a laptop computer. take the total time allowed. For example. This means that you should have no more than 25 slides for a 30-minute presentation. not bore. but confronting a team of cynical executives is the ultimate presentation stress test. or tables that require explanation. Here are some tips to help make your presentations sing. Stay within your presentation software’s default title and text blocks.

4. always have print copies of it available (note: conserve paper by printing multiple slides per page). especially for detailed or complex visuals. Use this guide to evaluate their services. 6. bring an extra laptop. R C H 5. Here are just some possible initiatives that might warrant a communications plan. For starters. Practice holding eye contact with individual audience members for upward of five seconds. Developing your presentation skills is an important way to get your voice heard in your organization. practice. Instead. Bring Two of Everything: Assume that your technology will fail. Finish early. and Maintain Your Strategy 3. Page 143 . their job is not to communicate on your behalf. IT is central to business processes and organizational goals. But a “do first. P Guide to Developing a Communications Plan Face it: communications skills are not among the many abilities for which information technology (IT) professionals are known. and backup copies of your presentation saved to CD-ROM (floppies are not reliable enough). This brief guide will walk you through the creation of a communications plan. To move your projects ahead you must be able to build consensus and develop relationships whether it be with other business units within the organization or with a client base. Double or triple up. your budget and your reputation are on the line. These moments are where lasting impressions are made. Are they asking the right questions? When Do I Need a Communications Plan? It should only take a few hours to draft a communications plan. Quick left to right scanning of the audience is less likely to engage them. cables. Hone Your Style: The only way to improve is to practice. attitude can doom a project as surely as faulty technology. This shows respect for your audience’s time. IT professionals pride themselves on being doers. Promote. You must be able to communicate what you are doing and why it matters to them. and practice. Be brief and candid. Don’t Use Technology Just Because You Can: Technology cannot replace creativity. If you do present an electronic slide show.Stage 8> Publish. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A In the boardroom. it is to help you communicate. Your organization may be large enough to employ professional communications staff. • • • Focus on perfecting the first 30 seconds and last 15 seconds of your presentation. Remember. You have to ask yourself whether the issue that needs communicating is worth the time investment. Other media – such as handouts – are sometimes more appropriate. Avoid Real-Time Visits to the Internet: The risk of technology failure is too high. store a copy of the site on your hard drive and use your browser to open the file. modem. We have attached a downloadable template document that you can use to create your own planning documents. explain later”. not talkers.

communication of Y2K issues to clients was part and parcel of encouraging due diligence steps that needed to be taken. Saying “we’ll put something in the newsletter or on the Web site” is not enough. “Build it and they will come” is not enough. If you have ever been in a meeting where somebody said. During Y2K initiatives. however you should be able to state the benefits of a particular technology in simple terms. • P G R O U • R C It is also important to note that if you have a range of existing communications vehicles. What do we want our audience to do? The best communication plans encourage an action on the part of the audience. The action encouraged by your plans might be as simple as attending an open meeting or going to a Web page for more on a new application. this does not mean you don’t need to do communications plans. a newsletter. for example. or a memo – without appropriate consideration of the audience or what you would like that audience to do. New Policy Initiatives. but it can be more complicated than you think. Department/Organization Wide Desktop Upgrade.Strategic IT Planning and Governance • • Major Software/Service Roll-out. If you can’t put what it is you want to communicate into three or four simple bullet points. A new communication vehicle – such as a newsletter. what. your communication effort is in serious trouble. it is a good idea to sit down with those involved in a particular project and brainstorm about your audience. If a newsletter is being done solely to “make the head office happy” then the audience is the head office. regular e-mail. and why of using these media. O ~ T E C H R E S E • I N F • Page 144 . This should reduce service-calls after the fact. or intranet page – should itself be given maximum introductory exposure to encourage its use. A communication plan will help you identify the how. Before you commit anything to paper. Communication is crucial to encouraging compliance with policy such as a new security policy or a disaster recovery plan. when. Consider these questions: • Who is our audience? This seems like a “no-brainer”. H A Key Point: Start With the Audience A key failing of many communications initiatives is that they begin with output products – such as a distributed e-mail. A newsletter or a Web site is only a tool. not the people reading the newsletter. Introduction of New Communications Vehicle. Do some advance legwork to help clients see the value of a change to their desktop workstation. To maximize awareness and acceptance of a new application or service. you need to plan how to make effective use of that tool. Does your audience read newsletters or do they line budgie cages with them? Do they read and respond to e-mail? Do they use the Internet/Intranet? What do we want our audience to know? Information Technology is complex. Focus on creating a list of key messages. “We should have a newsletter” or “Let’s e-mail everybody about it” then you have witnessed this thinking.

and Maintain Your Strategy The considerations prompted by the above questions should be interlocking. Now ask what possible barriers stand between your message and your audience. Here then are the components of your communications plan and what each of them means: • Overall Goal(s): Begin with a statement of what you hope to achieve with this communications effort. P I N F O ~ T E C • • • • Page 145 • • • • H R E S E A R C H G R O U . Take care to consider maximum impact for each action and a mutually supportive timetable. make sure you consider the cost of production and distribution. and action – fit together and with other considerations such as budget and timeline. Budget: Time for a reality check. Suggested Actions: Now comes the fun part. You should be able to boil down your messages into two or three bullet points. Roles and Accountability: Many an exciting communications plan has died because of inadequate follow through. Key Messages: This is where you list the gist of what you want to communicate. The goal is to have a simple. Timeline: By this point you should have a short list of actions that are “do-able”. Your key messages will provide the “why” for what you want that audience to do. Potential Barriers: You know whom your audience is and what you want to say to them.Stage 8> Publish. For example. This should be a brief statement. Objectives: Break down your overall goal into two or three discrete objectives. In essence you are stating your conclusion first. If you are going to produce anything on paper. Post Mortem: A firm date should be set for reviewing whether or not the timeline was met and what impact the communication plan had. Promote. Anatomy of a Communications Plan Your communications plan will lay out how key considerations – such as audience. one or two page document that lays out your plan to achieve clear communications goals. no more than one short paragraph. Be realistic. what are the best ways of carrying your message to your audience to help you move them toward a particular goal? This part lends itself well to a brainstorming session: start with all the options regardless of how unusual or expensive. Your plan should be clear about who will be responsible for various actions and who will make sure the timeline is met. ask yourself why they should care about your message. Given all of the possible barriers that may exist. Time is also a resource that should be budgeted. message. Now it’s important to plot out a timeline for the proposed actions to take place. Consider the costs that will be incurred if you outsource the job in whole or in part. the nature of your audience and how they receive information will guide your choice of communications vehicle.

This involves determining in detail all tasks needed to finish each project. Each project requires a Project Charter with the following components: • H • • • • C Sponsorship: Who is commissioning the work? User Community: Who will use the product? How many users are there? Functions: What will the product do? What purpose will it serve? Deadline and Other Constraints: When must the project be ready for release? Budget: Who is paying for the product? P O ~ T E R E S E A R C H G R O U 2. Define Each Project. 3. 2. Make sure your project plans have the following components to ensure you’re controlling it instead of the other way around: 1. 6. Keep your team apprised of problems and progress – change is much less harrowing when people can see where they are headed. Estimate Task Times Accurately. clients and senior management. Unexpected delays and unforeseen aspects of implementation often extend a timeline by over 40%. Time Management: This includes processes and techniques used to ensure the timely completion of each project. Always come equipped with a detailed project plan complete with goals and milestones. Don’t forget a contingency plan – if things aren’t working. avoid and control project risks. Risk Management: This includes strategies and tactics used to identify. Team Management: The project managers need to develop skills that create an efficient production system and a cooperative and effective team culture. This section will help the Project Managers start the task of outlining each project. procedures and requirements. stakeholders.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Design the Roll-Out Plan Control is an essential part of any project roll out. 5. 4. I N F Page 146 . you need a well-thought-out backup strategy. Plan Each Project. Double check to ensure that the following steps are included in your project implementation: 1. Quality Management: Activities and techniques used to ensure that all project activities and work products comply with all relevant standards. Time estimates are difficult aspects to predict accurately. Proper planning requires the project manager and sponsors to do the following: • • Create a Work Breakdown Structure. Communication Management: This enables interaction between project teams. Cost Management: This includes processes used to ensure that the projects are completed within the approved budget.

while the Critical Path charts aren’t date specific but represent more accurately the task-by-task progression of the project. The Rollercoaster of Change Regardless of the reasons for change. Promote. When selecting members for your project teams. The effect of change on employees and managers is stressful at the best of times. The final step in planning your projects is obtaining the approval of your clients. An unrealistic budget will only create frustration and disappointment among your project teams. you may have limited options available. check again. If your selection list extends beyond the skill set requirement. • • • Rolling out a full-scale IT strategy can be a large undertaking that required meticulous planning. If you think you’ve covered all the bases. managers must understand how to conduct change correctly in order to minimize department and company-wide stress during and after implementation. Page 147 I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U P . A budget can only be useful if it is realistic. and then check one more time for good measure. This may seem to be a simple point. Win Client Approval for the Plan. so make sure your estimates do not turn into a “pie in the sky” piece of work. Staff the Project Team. make your selections based on individual (or team) track records.Stage 8> Publish. Schedule Each Task (using a Gantt chart or Critical Path Charting). the project plans may need revising. multiplying the lack of incentive to complete the projects in a timely manner. Create a Budget. Make sure that the project plans are signed by someone with the authority to approve each project. A Task Analysis Form is used to collect information of the most consequence for your schedule and budget. Selecting teams and team members with proven track records improve the probability of your project being delivered on time and within budget. Depending upon client demands. and Maintain Your Strategy • • Create Task Analysis Forms. but it cannot be stressed enough. but this is essentially the reason for the project plan – better to revise the requirements now than to do it during implementation. The diagram below represents the “highs” and “lows” of the change process as experienced by individuals in a given organization. Gantt charts attach work tasks to a calendar. Make absolutely sure that you convey to your personnel why changes are being made and how they will affect different people’s positions. Make sure that your selections reflect the collection of skills needed as well as who is available. The formality of client approval generally depends on the size and complexity of each project.

Strategic IT Planning and Governance Rollercoaster of Change H G R O U P E A R C • Step 1 – Shock/Denial: When change is announced. Step 2 – Acknowledge Depression: Pretending that personnel are not experiencing stress brought on by change is dangerous. communicate clearly and often. Pay close attention to the people factor. Acknowledge the stress. shortly after the bottom. people will become more comfortable with the concept of change. • T E C H R E S • N F O ~ • I Change usually has a cultural impact that is often underestimated. Unfortunately. many change experiences are fraught with stress. Delegate tasks so that all staff members are participating in putting the pieces together in order for them to buy in to the new post-change vision. This is the most painful part of the change process. and stress the positives of what lies ahead. Clear two-way communication can mitigate many of change-associated staffing losses. Page 148 . Watch for “fight or flight” responses in personnel. and high turnover. or denial. Organizations involved in a large change process experience higher rates of employee dissatisfaction. Previous change experiences play a large role in the perception amongst personnel of how the change process will play out over the long term. things start to improve. which creates a virtuous circle of productivity improvement and greater hope. dispel uncertainty. anger. but also sell the benefits for the organization and its employees. personnel will probably respond negatively. Acknowledge the disruption and insecurity change can bring. People start to become more proficient with the new way of doing things. With consistent progress and small successes at the front-end of the project. This gives employees a sense of hope about the future. Establish a rewards system based on success measures to motivate participation. which may manifest as shock. lower productivity. and explain why the change is taking place. Step 3 – Hope/Readjustment: As demonstrated by the diagram above. and their productivity improves. listen to personnel concerns. However. express empathy. Step 4 – Rebuilding: The pieces of the puzzle should all be on the table and how the pieces fit together increasingly apparent to individuals at all levels of the organization. expect a “bottoming out” period.

and managing to it will make your department happier and more productive because everyone will know where they stand and where they are headed. Hire to fill gaps. You run the risk of losing these people if you do not move them into positions where they can use their abilities. G R O U I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H P Simply put. Train to retain.Stage 8> Publish. There may be a number of reasons that you have held on to them until now. Depending on the nature of the problem and the potential to replace lost skills. you probably had one of two reactions when you saw the results: • • No wonder I never get a break. Now that you have the right mix of people. but you should begin planning to replace them. Creating an organizational infrastructure plan for your department. Too many moves too quickly can make everybody paranoid that they are the next to be replaced. Chances are that a number of your staff are very competent. most IT departments are either staffed inadequately or inappropriately. Waiting to hire people may feel like you are moving slower than necessary. It is probably equally likely that you have some people who are counterproductive to your efforts. your timeline for terminating the ‘bad apples’ should be at most six months. Adjust the mix. How do we get anything done? We don’t have the mix of skills we need. If you are behind on completing your performance reviews. Before you make any changes. Promote. We don’t have enough people. show them some appreciation by investing in training to keep their skills current – they will repay you with increased loyalty and improved productivity. Only once you have moved your existing staff into positions that best fit their skills and terminated employees who do not fit should you begin hiring to fill gaps. and Maintain Your Strategy Adjusting Your Current Organizational Structure If you did the work on the previous pages to assess your optimal organizational structure. Take heart in knowing that you are not alone. but it is probably also the most important factor in both your and your department’s success. get them caught up as soon as possible. • • • • • • Page 149 . Review your organizational chart quarterly and make adjustments as your needs change. Let’s face it – managing your people is probably one of the most difficult parts of your job. Make the obvious moves. but you have to be careful to avoid disrupting your current culture. The important thing to do now is to recognize the situation and determine an action plan for making improvements. Manage their careers. communicating it to your staff. Here is what we suggest: • Conduct performance reviews. but are not currently in positions ideally suited to their skill sets. Get rid of the bad apples. it is only fair to your staff to provide them with feedback on their performance.

Prioritize all projects against strategic business goals. if some resources are being underutilized. Similarly. If one project falls behind schedule. I N F O ~ T E C Re-establish Project Priorities Projects should be re-prioritized as funding and business conditions change. R E E H Review Utilization Opportunities Cross-project thinking will help you identify opportunities and risks. and the Project Portfolio Manager in general.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Tips For Ongoing IT Strategic Governance Complete Quarterly Top Executive Investment Reviews A quarterly review of your projects and investments is essential to guaranteeing the health of your overall strategy. Allocate shared resources more effectively and flexibly. this could have a ripple effect through all other projects with which it shares resources. Look at which projects share common resources. mentoring. Page 150 . This person will manage the Project Portfolio Master Schedule and be responsible for calling all quarterly meetings of top executives. Become aware of the interrelationships and interdependencies between projects that could cause ripple or domino effects in the event of a problem. most projects are often treated as independent silo operations. Identify the following: 1. P A R C G R O U S One of the first steps you should take is to assign a Project Portfolio Manager. Underutilized assets that can be deployed elsewhere 2. PPM is based on the same theories as those governing financial investment portfolio management. However. Prevent project redundancy and overlap. Governing your projects as a comprehensive portfolio will help you to track projects over the long haul. The goal of these quarterly meetings. Over-utilized assets that need to be conserved 3. namely staff. you should find new ways to make use of them in other projects. Ways to improve asset utilization by training. PPM allows you to: • • • • H Catalog and know what projects are planned and/or already underway. is to identify project winners and loser early. and other techniques Always be vigilant in watching for ways to maximize resource utilization. and map out risk points and mitigation plans. minimize risk. This approach can result in too many projects and too few resources. and optimize resource allocation. Project Portfolio Management (PPM) allows you to collect and control your entire suite of IT projects as a single set of interrelated activities.

These should receive the highest resource allocation. finance. maximize profit. and often receive funding from different sources. funds and resources reallocated. and Maintain Your Strategy 1. assign rankings and update your catalog. and other departments on at least a quarterly basis. Remember: all changes must be made at the portfolio level instead of the project level so that the best opportunities from across the organization are pursued. low priority projects. Catalog all projects: Using a spreadsheet or database. or in reduced resource allocation to. Divide your ranked projects into types: Different projects achieve different organizational aims. and timelines rescheduled on at least a quarterly basis. 2. Make this repository as detailed as possible. 3. Remember: all changes should be made at the portfolio level. marketing. Cuts could come in the form of complete cancellation of. involve different stakeholders. Make Cuts: The overall health of the portfolio. Promote. add them to your project portfolio repository as soon as they are made. include the project name. P I Page 151 • • Projects that most closely align with organizational objectives. Reprioritize Regularly: Projects should be re-prioritized. Separating out these projects will help you decide what percent of your budget should be directed at which project types. Label your projects as: • • • A utility project (basic necessary maintenance) An upgrade project (improvement of the existing technology base) A strategic investment project (new endeavor that will bring revenue or increased service). N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U . 5. add them to your project portfolio repository as soon as they are made. consolidate all project details. operations. description. is your goal. IT. The cuts you make to your portfolio may be dictated by resource availability. Meet with key stakeholders from sales. If you make any changes. Once these objectives are clear. Re-prioritize all projects: Project value should directly correlate to organizational objectives. established timeframes. For each entry. including their role and degree of involvement. Localized cost-cutting projects should be of the lowest priority. not individual projects. 4. and all staff members assigned. If you make any changes. not the project level. estimated costs. and minimize risk are your most important and should receive top ranking. goals.Stage 8> Publish.

I N F O ~ T E C H R E S E A R C H G R O U Page 152 . You should now have the support of key stakeholders in your organization. and your organization in the strategic application of information technology. If you take enough time to complete this plan properly. unless there is a significant change to your business that requires you to rebuild your plan. but not so often that you are operating reactively.Strategic IT Planning and Governance Conclusion A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow. George S. Patton P Congratulations! You now have a methodology and a living document to guide you. We suggest reviewing your plan and making revisions on an annual basis. once per year should be often enough to ensure that you are changing with the times. which will make implementing your plan much easier. your department. Keep their support by maintaining an open and continuous dialogue through your IT Steering Committee.

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reports.com. see our Web site at http://www. T E I N F O ~ S Page 154 . and how we might help you.Strategic IT Planning and Governance About Info-Tech Research Group Info-Tech Research Group is a research and professional services firm focused on providing premium research and advice geared to the unique needs of IT Managers of mid-sized enterprises.infotech. Info-Tech provides practical and thorough solutions that enable IT Managers to bridge the gap between technology and business. 2004. to stay current. methodologies. and consulting services help IT professionals across North America and the U. We cannot. C H R E S © Info-Tech Research Group. guarantee that referenced Web sites will not change the location or contents of linked materials and will not be held responsible for such changes. Research Analyst Contributors: • • • Davin Juusola. G R O U P Strategic IT Planning and Governance: Info-Tech’s Step-By-Step Consulting Methodology Authors • John Sloan. Vice President.K. CEO. E A R C H For more information about the Info-Tech Research Group. Note: All Web links in this document were checked for accuracy and functionality at the time of publication. Our web publications. and achieve professional success. Joel McLean. however. effectively manage people and technology. education. Research Manager. Jason Livingstone.