Are You Aware of the IT Value Realized?

We discussed on previous posts how frameworks are good enablers of IT value creation and how they can be key components of the IT strategic roadmap of an organization, and we have also stressed out the importance of frameworks being adopted from the top; otherwise, many initiatives will fail.

But why is it important for the IT operational areas such as Infrastructure, Application Development or Maintenance and Support to adopt and adapt a framework, or a set of frameworks, that defines the IT management practices, and the processes and activities to be followed? What is the value to IT staff of it? This is a very important question that many times is overlooked, therefore the adoption of IT frameworks is perceived in many cases just as a bureaucratic and unnecessary approach.

I will talk for instance about ITIL, which is probably the most common framework known by most IT professionals. Many companies have adopted ITIL best practices because they wanted to go with the trends in the industry, or maybe because their common sense told them it would be valuable doing so; but how many of them are actually able to realize, in quantifiable terms, the value they have obtained from it? Are they all certain that the benefit is higher than the cost to implement it?

A lot of people had to be trained; automation and monitoring tools have had to be implemented; time has had to be allocated for process documentation, monitoring, reporting and many other activities have had to take place; people has had to adopt new roles; all this represents money a huge investment many IT organizations have decided to do without many times realizing the real return they are getting in the end! And I’m not talking about ROI purely; what was the forecasted technical, operational, economic, financial and strategic value of such an initiative?

If these benefits are clearly identified and communicated to all relevant stakeholders from the start of the initiative of adopting any framework, it will be clear for the IT staff in operation roles what the benefits for them and the whole enterprise will be, and there will be higher chances that they commit and make the adoption easier for the whole organization.

Let’s not forget that a single IT framework by itself will not be enough for the enterprise to succeed. There are many frameworks and standards with different approaches that are needed for IT to achieve its ultimate goal of enabling value to the customer—after service management practices (ITIL), an organization needs to support the adoption of a process approach through an IT Governance framework (COBIT), which at the same time is dependent on a culture of collaboration (DevOps), which requires teams to be Agile (SCRUM), but everything is part of an initiative that needs to be managed as a project (PMBOK or PRINCE2); and this just to mention a quick example.

The point is: with so many guidance available out there for facing the continuously changing requirements of the customer, what should we do first? Should we first enhance the capabilities of our IT development teams? Should we focus on DevOps training to enable collaboration among teams, or should we focus on the adoption of an Agile approach across all teams? Should we train or people or should we buy a tool instead?

Why not taking the time to understand, using best practices from an international framework, the benefits of undertaking any project or initiative, and then make an informed decision on which initiative should go first based on the value each will create?

If you want to know what are the top seven frameworks that IT organizations can currently take advantage from, join us in a webinar session we are hosting on May 4th.