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An Unconventional way to Implement IT Governance

Each Organization is different, Hence IT governance should be looked more holistically in an enterprise, Here is an unconventional approach

  1. Understand the Operating Style of Organization. Who holds the decision making power, Is it with the CEO, Board, CFO, PE Investors or someone else. Know what view each of the CXO roles has on organization priorities and the role they consider IT has in the organization.
  2. This should give a clear idea about the maturity of IT function (Sourcing Unit, Order Taker, Solution Provider, Innovation Partner) –  A CXO survey could help at this stage
  3. By Now some pain points from IT would have surfaced (Delayed Projects, Cost Overrun, No Innovation, No business involvement, Rouge IT – Every organization will have some quandaries with IT.

It should now makes sense to decide how best to set up formal IT Governance – Consider following

1)      Governance can be around

  • IT Operations  – Service Catalog , SLA
  • Business Management– Projects, Innovation, Demand
  • Sourcing , Vendor Management and Control
  • Organization Structure, Learning, Leadership Development
  • Data, Process , Architecture  etc
  • Security and Compliance – Information Security, Risk and Compliance

Pick what is most relevant to gain trust of Leaders

2)      For Execution Approach could consider following in any order what works best for your organization

  • Newsletters – Issue Newsletters, Broadcasting good and bad about IT, This could be about ROI of IT, Project delays, Benefits Realization etc
  • Gamifcation –  Create IT scorecards and benchmarking performance of business units on IT benchmarks to generate a spirit of competition
  • Decision Entities – Implement Delegation of Authority for IT, This way all the decisions are not cascaded up to IT Steering Committee. Let the Project Manager and Business Manager resolve some things at their own level.
  • Audits – While no one likes them, However sometimes they just help in drawing attention to CXO’s ears . Partner with the Audit team and explore how they can help.
  • End to End Demand Management Process – Implement an end to end Demand management process which takes care of new project validation , business case approval, project development and design, user training and rollout, user adoption and change management and benefits realization.

In my experience, The best approach for IT governance has been the one which has aligned the Textbook/Framework approach with

  • Maturity of IT function and the expectations business leaders have from IT
  • Immediate and Long term Priorities of Organization
  • Ways of working, political equations among key leaders and Decision making approach in the organization

Written by Abhinav Mittal, Abhinav is Author & IT Productivity Coach based out of Dubai, He has a more than a decade of experience in helping business leaders get more value from their IT investments

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