A Practical Approach for IT Governance

Archive for November 2014

CIO: Past, Present and Future

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Partnership with CECIn the past, the CIO was the interpreter between technology and business. The CIO served as the single point of contact between business/leadership and the technology group.  Initially, the CIO helped the technology group understand the business.  As the CIO moved from a Director of MIS/VP of IT to the CIO role, he/she helped the business understand technology.  The CIO did not stop there.  Today, the CIO is not just managing IT to keep the lights on but is managing the information to enable enterprises to become nimble and gain the competitive edge.  What is the future for the CIO?  Will the CIO take on additional roles like the CMO?  Even the COO or CEO are now within the reach of CIOs who have transformed from traditional silo IT executives to the C-Suite.

At UGovernIT, Inc. we have been developing tools for the CIO to manage the business of IT.  With CEC we now get access to valuable content that will help drive the change in the role and value created by the Office of the CIO.  Our partnership is designed to bring content from experienced CIOs, process and tools to aid the transformation.   Working with CEC, an IDG brand, we will be developing a framework and a series of articles that discuss the transforming role of the CIO and build the tools that enable the CIO to be effective and valuable to the enterprises they serve.

Written by Subbu Murthy

November 30, 2014 at 9:46 am

Posted in IT Governance

The New Management Paradigm

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Archer holds the bow that represents project management triangle.In the past we have constantly used project scope, quality, schedule and cost as drivers for selecting and managing our technology initiatives.  We subscribed to the SDLC model where we attempted to incorporate these drivers in our planning and execution phase.  We recognized quickly that risk was an important aspect of our decision making and added that as a critical component of our management and decision frameworks.

While these models still have relevance, life cycles are shrinking.  It took over a decade to bring new products to market.  Today it is less than a few years.  Take a look at Uber and its phenomenal success in just a couple of years.  Enterprises need to be nimble – yet, it is not easy to ignore cost, quality, time or the scope/features of the technology initiative.  Is there a better paradigm?

Factors Affecting Projects

Agile models have relied on developing technology aligned to user needs and budgets, but have failed to provide a decision framework to choose between alternative technology initiatives.

In the new paradigm, I propose to reuse some of the soft factors that were not explicitly used in managing technology initiatives.  The four suggested factors are: constraints (as opposed to time), budget (as opposed to cost), value (as opposed to scope) and satisfaction (as opposed to quality).  Traditional schedules are difficult to adhere to as there will always be change.  Constraints can help with time lines and schedules within a project. Budget is a realistic way to manage a project.  Traditional SDLC models required “budgeting the design”.  Estimation was not easy leading to significant variances.  Managing to a budget helps keep an eye on the project scope providing a balance between value delivered and costs expended. Value also provides a measure of how to manage scope creep.  Using satisfaction provides a user driven measure of quality.

The proposed drivers: constraints, budget, value and satisfaction provides a new paradigm for measuring and managing projects.  However, it requires a different set of measures including subjective and qualitative data.  Traditional tools are not equipped to handle these drivers.  Another challenge is managing the change – acceptance of new drivers will require commitment from all stake holders: management, technical staff and the leadership team to be effective.

Written by Subbu Murthy

November 2, 2014 at 1:59 am