Thursday, December 17, 2020


IT leaders should foster multichannel communication, harness multi-dimensional business relationships and cross functional collaboration, enforce multilateral management discipline, and catalyze IT innovation systematically.

At the dawn of the Digital Era with an increasing rate of changes, businesses become more complex than ever. Highly innovative organizations depend more heavily on its technological knowledge and IT-enabled capabilities to develop business competency. 

The scope of IT is broadening daily, social and environmental needs are increasingly driving the type of access people require. CIOs should keep in mind that IT is about information and innovation, so to keep IT relevant, they need to not just work at the functional level, but ponder upon how to unlock business performance and maximize the full digital potential.

Vendor/customer relationship management: IT is shifting from inside out operation driven to outside in customer driven. Everybody talks about customer experience these days, IT has both internal customers and external customers. Running a customer-centric IT doesn’t mean that you will say “Yes,” to all the customers’ requests and run IT as an order taker only. It means that IT needs to become a trustful business partner and provide the premium business solutions to tailor customers’ needs. Always take the customer view as the basis of measurement for continuous IT deliveries, reduce the delivery cycle time and improve customer experiences.

Besides customer relationships, vendor relationships are also important to improve IT effectiveness and drive innovation. A good IT vendor focuses on processes, and there's always an opportunity for providing "grade" or "range" solutions, each with different results and budgets and risk profile. IT vendors have to walk into any major transformation projects with their eyes wide open, fully expecting to apply changes as they move forward - such flexibility has to be part of the IT transformation strategy. They should help customers overcome real business obstacles or add value via well-defined KPIs, that's the key to building up a win-win situation.

Structure/Process optimization: Many IT organizations get stuck at silo mentality and run as a cost center. High mature companies are highly dependent on IT executives who make the proposal to optimize the business or replace the technology based on the need for the business. Organizational processes underpin business capabilities, organizational structures streamlines business processes and improves functional alignment. Strong business processes have a better chance to deliver a better result. IT is often the “superglue” to close the gaps between process and capability via systematic alignment of crucial business elements such as people, process, technology, and assets.

To make continuous improvement, people should think and contribute to the design and restructure IT by learning about the drivers behind the design of the IT department. Any IT restructure effort should well align with its IT strategy which is always an integral component of overall business strategy. IT leaders need to ponder: If you redesigned the IT department, what factors drove the restructuring? How is the structure of your IT department aligned with the organization? Design an IT structure to optimize business processes, improve productivity, and embrace digital mindsets, methodologies, and practices. The main objective is to lay the foundation for service-oriented, non-siloed teams closely aligned with the business model and strategies.

GRC: The goal of IT GRC is to steer the organization in the right direction. Identify IT pain points which perhaps have surfaced (Delayed Projects, Cost Overrun, No Innovation, No business involvement, Rogue IT – Every organization will have some quandaries with IT). Organizational leaders also need to check: Does IT drive team building and organizational learning? Do you want to be in a constant learning mode? GRC is not a single process, but a collection of processes with other governance mechanisms, such as roles and technologies. There are potentially multiple joint business/IT processes that could define the scope of IT Governance, Risk, and Compliance.

The effective GRC practices do not restrict IT innovation, on the opposite, help to improve IT maturity. Each organization is different; hence, IT GRC should be looked at more holistically in an enterprise, and follow the logical steps to improve organizational effectiveness and maturity. An effective IT GRC framework helps IT management define clear objectives, processes and structures required, resources, the authority of the system, and performance indicators to deliver organizational objectives and implement business strategy steadily.

Keep in mind, IT management is the business of the entire company, not just the business of the IT department. The breadth and depth of IT management include people (skills & capability), process (workflow, process effectiveness and efficiency), organizational structure design, and technology update. IT leaders should foster multichannel communication, harness multi-dimensional business relationships and cross functional collaboration, enforce multilateral management discipline, and catalyze IT innovation systematically.


Post a Comment