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How to Identify Gaps in Your IT Strategy Process

Posted by Protiviti KnowledgeLeader on Wed, Feb 26, 2020 @ 08:00 AM
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Everybody is talking about IT Strategy these days. As IT managers, you’re faced with considerable pressure to communicate a comprehensive strategy, and show a clear road to improving the business value of your activities. IT strategy management is often met with yawns by CEOs and other executives, yet it can advance or undermine every move that a company makes. In one-sided communication models like this, it’s often the case that only problems are properly recognized or attributed to your team.

You have most likely created a road map for your IT strategy and you’re ready to implement it right away. What about problems that may arise and catch the attention of company decisions makers?

“Strategic alignment between business goals and drivers, and IT goals and initiatives is a critical area for most organizations. Increased financial and regulatory scrutiny has forced organizations to implement a tighter fiscal policy around spending from a cost containment and strategic investment standpoint. As a result, it is important for organizations to be able to measure and monitor the value delivered by those investments.

The various objectives are to evaluate the level of alignment between the business strategic plan and IT strategic plan, assess the adequacy of the information and process used in the development of the plan, and develop a road map for optimization of the IT strategic plan.

You’ll be able to identify and control the issues that disrupt alignment between business strategic planning and the IT strategic planning, assess the adequacy of the information and process used in the development of the plan and if necessary, develop a road map for optimization of the IT strategic plan.

These tasks are split into a framework of six activity categories of a typical organization:

  1. Decide What's Important
  2. Set Goals That Lead
  3. Align Systems
  4. Work the Plan
  5. Innovate Purposefully
  6. Step Back

Each activity category lists several components: what was addressed, the gaps that were identified and recommendations. For example, under the Final category, you’ll find this component: 

Component

Addressed/Accomplished

Gaps

Recommendations

External and internal factors affecting strategic planning need to be reviewed and evaluated.

A strategic planning market assessment is performed. This assessment evaluates industry trends, products, competitors by product, and emerging markets and technologies. This information is used to develop the strategic objectives for a company.

Evidence of external factors being considered in a formalized process for IT strategic planning does not exist.

IT should formally consider and document external and internal factors affecting internal and external customers during strategic planning sessions.

With this information, you can easily identify strategic gaps and report in a concise way and provide a clear road map to how everything will be addressed.

You can read more on this topic in our IT Strategic Gap Assessment Report and by exploring these related tools on KnowledgeLeader:

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Topics: IT Audit, IT Strategy, Digital Transformation

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