Saturday, August 1, 2020

The Outline Point of Business Requirement of IT

Business requirements assessment is an important step for IT to become a crucial piece of business solution. 

Information Technology is the linchpin to weave all crucial elements into differentiated business competency. The dysfunctional IT or poor IT investment might cause the business to fail even overnight. The challenge is to have a harmonized vision about overall IT capabilities and maturities.

 To become a trustful business partner, IT organizations should step out of the inside-out transaction box, to understand the business and customers better via the outside-in lens and make business requirement assessments with outline points such as the customer expectations and the company strategy. 

In fact, from the point of the business strategy changes, all tasks/requirements should be assessed and ranked in different dimensions.

The criticality (value) for the business of the task: There is no stand-alone IT strategy, IT is business and IT strategy is an integral component of business strategy. All IT efforts need to be business initiatives. IT has to oversee the full set of business requirements to ensure cohesiveness and to determine all the customers, stakeholders, and obtain their involvement. However, in many organizations, the IT-business gap is a reality. And there is typically a significant gap between what the business wants and needs vs. what IT is providing. It is important to convince the shareholders of new initiatives with solid business justification by showing them the potential business benefits to meet the strategic goal and criticality for the business of the tasks.

Resource and talent are limited, reduce the number of "prioritized business initiatives" and clearly delineate the really critical ones. It is usually suboptimal and decelerates business speed, especially when legitimate top priorities are delayed. A blatant optimism bias plagues the task duration and effort estimates. Only through an in-depth understanding of business, IT leaders can make a priority choice based on the comprehensive understanding of the company, industry, customer-centricity, the appetite for risk, and ROI. It aids in removing silo thinking, calculating ROIs, and risks.

The readiness of business for the IT-driven task solution:
IT, marketing, finance, HR, etc, all have its own subsection of the overall business strategy. There’s the difference between business requirements and IT requirements. To keep IT and business on the same page, IT leaders should listen to a wide range of feedback from business users, question the business’s requirements and justifications of IT-based business initiatives. They must learn how to leverage reliable information for helping business leaders demystify the IT investment puzzle, enabling them to decide whether or not an IT investment is worth-making.

To truly build the premium level of IT-business relationship, IT leaders have to reach out horizontally to their business peers, offer customers a set of choices, and take the premium solution to solve their problems. It is also vital to have a broad-based IT management beneath the CIO, be able to translate organizational strategy into business initiatives and map business requirements into technical requirements, and with the business ability to assess and demonstrate to management how technological advances can benefit an organization for long-term business benefit.

The feasibility (effort/complexity) of IT-driven business solutions: Running a business is an iterative problem-solving continuum. Nowadays, very few business problems can be solved without IT involved. The development of the problem-solving approach should be done logically to uncover a problem, define the scope, and make an objective business requirements assessment. The project/program scope is typically always the area where there can be many issues with interpretation, decomposition, assumptions, and lack of continuity and understanding between the stakeholders.

Further, IT leaders or architects perhaps develop wrong assumptions in terms of stakeholder requirements and make mistakes in the technological sense if they do not listen, question, or understand carefully, and lose buy-in due to the lack of empathetic communication. Ambiguous requirements perhaps additionally cause a lot of rework very late in the quality cycle. IT is complex, first, try to analyze what the impact of complexity is on a system or potential solution proposal; the second is to look for the impact of removing some of the complications by simplification or optimization.

IT-enabled organizational competencies enable the business to overcome business challenges and improve the overall organizational changeability and maturity. Business requirements assessment is an important step for IT to become a crucial piece of business solution. The key rests in getting both IT and non-IT stakeholders to understand what is taking place, what it means to their organization, what the roles must be, and how best to proceed. CIOs must astutely focus on envisioning, innovating, and coaching, shaping a high performance IT which can continually deliver what the business needs and maximize the digital potential of the company.


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