In today’s rapidly changing business environment, the reliance on technology has escalated to a point where most mission-critical functions of the organization would cease to exist without a responsive IT team. This transition has created a new wave of business leaders who recognize the value of IT, but often still struggle to understand the role that IT plays in moving the needle on business goals.
Due to the nature of IT having traditionally been relegated to just a couple individuals, it’s not uncommon to have your resident IT expert holding the keys to the kingdom. They have the knowledge and expertise stored away in their heads to keep operations flowing smoothly, but rarely is this information clearly communicated to the rest of the business or documented in a central location. This issue becomes all the more apparent when that go-to “IT Guy” inevitably decides to retire or quit – taking with them all the power to keep your business running smoothly.
This is why developing an IT framework has become a crucial step in future-proofing your business. Having a framework that enables these checks and balances will help bring better business and IT alignment and result in benefits such as:
- Adaptable structure that is not dependent upon a single individual
- Enablement of scalability and growth
- Improved collaboration and positive business impact
The Two Types of IT Frameworks Every Organization Should Have
Midmarket organizations should expect that IT provides both strategic and operational value to the business. This can be established by developing the following frameworks:
The operational framework sets clear expectations from the business about what IT should deliver, including the process of creating, implementing, and managing efficient and cost-effective services.
Your operational framework should include:
- Accountability and responsibility matrix: Defines roles and responsibilities, including vendors/partners
- Documented policies and procedures: Covers incident, problem, and change management policies and procedures, service level agreements and identification of all vendor contracts, including renewals, SLAs, ongoing vendor evaluation, and scorecards. Make sure these documents are password-protected with business leadership access.
- IT governance: Aligns IT with the business in terms of compliance, security, and spend
- Risk assessment: Identifies potential and current risks and strategies to mitigate them
Modern IT organizations must not only keep the lights on, but also proactively define a strategic framework that evaluates new opportunities, maps those opportunities to relevant business value, and ultimately delivers measurable results.
Your strategic framework should include:
- Clear understanding of business goals, aspirations, and initiatives
- Evaluation of current and future technologies to meet those goals
- Defined roadmap that captures the initiatives, cost (ROI), and ownership
Partnering with Managed Services
IT transitions at every level are causing midmarket organizations to evaluate the maturity of their IT function. Whether you’re not getting the answers you need from your existing IT expert to drive digital transformation, or you’re experiencing IT turnover that’s leaving you stranded, an IT framework will ensure you’re covered through every transition. For many organizations, partnering with a Managed Services Provider (MSP) who has the expertise to drive both strategic and operational value to the business and keep detailed records.