By Carl Chick
There is a secret many enterprises are discovering; the ability to manage both business and IT change through the modernization of processes, applications, and technology architectures. Regarding IT specifically, they’re discovering that building flexibility into their systems allows them to continually transform and thrive in a dynamic environment. The resulting business practices then allow them to not only respond to change, but to anticipate possible outcomes, lead innovation, and quickly accelerate decision-making so they can lead the change.
In order to approach IT in this way, an enterprise should consider value in three dimensions; business, technical, and time. The business dimension gauges the effectiveness of their systems in supporting and enhancing the business objectives. The technical dimension then gauges the speed and efficiency of those systems required to “keep the light on” (e.g., payroll). The third dimension of time gauges its relationship to, and linkage between, the other two dimensions. This approach can help bring focus to issues such as
- Reduction of capital expenses
- Reduction of on-going operational costs
- Improved system availability and responsiveness
- Better business/IT alignment
Barriers to transformation may include lack of funding, inadequate skill sets, resource constraints, lack of best practices and methodologies, and existing investments in technology. However, transformation can be achieved based on a solid roadmap of executing applications modernization, infrastructure modernization, IT process and governance optimization, IT sourcing, and IT project optimization initiatives. The “secret” here is in approaching transformation from a holistic IT portfolio structure.
These holistic approaches to modernization frameworks help ensure sustainable viability. It also signals companies have a journey to make. There is no single budget-cycle “quick fix”, as benefits are realized throughout the journey, not having to wait until the end of the transformation to begin seeing bottom-line benefits. Well structured IT modernization frameworks are structured to be largely self-funding, so savings from early phases of the program assist in funding subsequent improvements.
True IT transformation has many layers. It is a continual, iterative process that must take many things into account and must occur in waves, over time as your operations allow. The model entails much more than just servers, storage and existing applications. The bigger picture consists of ultimately optimizing your whole IT portfolio. This includes: infrastructure (servers, storage, network, and desktop components), your applications portfolio, your ongoing management (or governance) over those environments and supporting IT and refresh processes, strategic sourcing decisions, and prioritization of your IT projects.
You can read more on one organizations efforts to modernize and enhance performance by going to here.