Information Technology (IT) has always challenged the way companies to organize their business, communicate with clients, and deliver services. The most dominant reorganization strategy leans toward decentralizing IT, melding the knowledge-base with business strategy.
This tactic ensures that as business goals pivot, IT can continuously respond with the necessary solutions to support and maintain the enterprise. In turn, future technological advances and improvements are hardwired to fit right into current and upcoming strategies and initiatives.
What does it mean to align IT solutions with business goals?
Aligning IT and business strategies involve more than simply melding them into a single document. With this model, every aspect of the IT strategy should improve or support the goals of the business in one way or another. Any IT-related investment or project should create or optimize business value. Even more, than this, to maximize alignment, IT should not be looking to enhance IT-related goals or objectives. Its priority should always be to achieve business-related metrics.
However, alignment is not only IT’s responsibility. Leadership teams play a huge role, as well. They need to be aware of their IT resources, something that is most often neglected. Furthermore, they must understand how IT plays a role in their business’ effectiveness, as well as how it can impact their speed of response to market change.
Benefits of IT-business alignment
It’s no secret that using an IT-business alignment model can help improve your business’ performance. This is a result of all aspects of a company being aware of each other and working toward a common goal. Below are some of the benefits of this alignment:
- IT supports every business strategy, adding value to each and pushing them to success
- Compliance and risk issues are much easier to control and manage
- IT demands will consistently and efficiently be met without failure
- The agility of the business will increase exponentially, and it will be able to react to changes faster and better
- There will be greater integration and collaboration between respective departments
- Supply chains and processes will be far more efficient.
How to align business goals and IT solutions
The keys to align IT and business strategies are mutual leadership and accountability. IT departments, such as NENS IT Support in Boston, must be able to increase accountability for its results, but it must also be able to hold the business accountable for IT. One way to do this is with the following four-step plan:
This step translates business objectives into measurable IT services so that resources are effectively allocated to maximize turnover. Effective communication between business and IT leaders is essential during this step.
In this step, IT must understand business needs, ensuring that they’re only implementing systems and infrastructure that increase business value and optimize operations.
Service must be delivered based on company objectives and expectations with IT acting as a single point-of-service request.
Although metrics are essential, it’s also imperative that IT implements a business filter to what it’s measuring, while still keeping a clear relationship between the measured parameters and business aims