Business and IT Governance Model

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Business and IT Governance Model
Martijn Swagerman, ICT Consultant, Netherlands

What high level tools do we have to communicate business - IT governance?
In my humble opinion, there is still a huge gap between business (strategy) and supporting and enabling IT (strategy).

In a high definition study, I tried to figure out which instruments, tools, methods and techniques we have to describe, analyze and communicate the gap, so both business and IT managers can grow to a more mature business-IT governance model.

The high level tools I've come up with so far are:
- Information management - What information do we (the business as a whole) need, how do we need it, what will it cost us, which are the risks...
- Information architecture - How can we describe the business as a whole, the processes it needs, the information these processes need and generate...? But also, how do we align the different layers and disciplines of business and IT as they change (and they DO change).
- Service level management - The "contracts" between business (what do we ask) and IT (what do we deliver and how much will it cost you). And also the processes the IT department uses to manage what they deliver (and the costs of it).
- Program- & Project management - To manage the necessary changes in both business (processes) and IT.

Do we need more? Can we put all we need in these four categories to describe, analyze and communicate and, hopefully one day, close the gap between Business and IT?

IT-Governance what is This?
Bergmann, Business Consultant, Germany
What does "IT Governance" really mean? In my opinion this is a "plastic term" or a "consultant phrase".
The IT department is, in any industry a support unit - no more. So, you can say: "Governance in the IT domain" - However, IT is a follower of the corporate governance policies.
Bye, Peter.

The COBIT Model for IT Governance and IT Strategic Alignment
Ken Gordon MBA PMP, Strategy Consultant, United Kingdom
IT Governance is the mechanism through which the IT Strategic Alignment with Business Strategy may be accomplished. IT Governance incorporates the 'high level tools ' noted by Martijn, together with other aspects.

There are several IT Governance models and methods available as templates for organisations to adopt and adapt according to the organisation\s needs. Whilst IT may be said to be a prerequisite for competitive market positioning and operational management, IT Governance may be said to be prerequisite for effective leverage and management of IT; in support of the Business Strategy.

In answer to Martijn's question I would point to IT Governance models such as Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology or COBIT. The COBIT model covers all the 'high level tools' as Martijn has described, plus many additional areas such as compliance and security.

The business orientation of COBIT consists of linking business goals to IT goals, providing metrics and maturity models to measure their achievement, and identifying the associated responsibilities of business and IT process owners.

The process focus of COBIT 4.1 is illustrated by a process model that subdivides IT into four domains (Plan and Organize, Acquire and Implement, Deliver and Support, and Monitor and Evaluate) and 34 processes in line with the responsibility areas of plan, build, run and monitor.

IT Governance.... Suggested Definition..
jonathan rose, Entrepreneur, United Kingdom
IT Governance = "the ability to sponsor, make and enforce the right IT decisions"
Run, policies, investment portfolio... etc, etc.


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Ken Gordon MBA PMP
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