The Importance of IT Planning
There is never a good excuse for IT management not having a formally documented IT Plan or Strategic Roadmap. We often find that organizations operating without an appropriate IT plan are unable to engage in sufficient levels of proactive management. Instead they take on a fire fighting mentality which leads to increased levels of risk, operating inefficiencies and ultimately poor outcomes for the business.
Symptoms of poor, or absent, IT planning include:
- Reactionary rather than preventative attitude towards problem fixing
- Ongoing infrastructure capacity constraints
- Inefficient use of capital and operational funds
- Poorly aligned IT policies that impact the efficiency of the business (such as mailbox size limits)
- Inability to deliver on business requirements in a timely manner
- The “resource crunch” – no time to do the job properly
- No capacity to provide evidence that supports critical budget or project requests
- Defensive attitude of IT help desk staff
- Business units making technology decisions without the involvement of IT
- Loss of executive management “faith” in IT service delivery
A good quality IT plan will help management to find the right balance between business usual activities and the planned projects that deliver enhancements to services and capabilities. It can also be used as a tool to unlock funding from the business that enables key IT initiatives that would otherwise remain underfunded and undeployable.