8.1

Summary

The IT Standard for Business is a hands-on IT management framework for companies and organizations of all kinds. The IT Standard employs the best international industry practices, while providing a more comprehensive and practical approach to business-oriented management. The IT Standard is written in everyday language and benefits business executives as much as IT professionals.

Digitalization changes how organizations relate to their customers, master products and services, do preventive maintenance and add totally new functions and features to their existing offerings. Thus it is a central part of operations, which in turn affects the way strategic decisions are made. In this version of the IT Standard, digitalization is considered in every stream.

The IT Standard consists of five streams covering the operation of the entire IT organization:

  • Enterprise Development
  • Strategy and Governance
  • Sourcing and Supplier Management
  • Project and Development Management
  • Service Management

 

Enterprise Development integrates the different streams and links IT management to management of the company’s business. Each stream is introduced and contains the significance and objectives, the required roles and competence, and the functions and purposes. For each stream, its nominal weight in companies of different sizes is discussed.

The main points of the IT Standard can be summarized as follows:

  • Digitalization strategy and initiatives need a driver and control mechanism for the company’s IT operations and their development which can be found in Enterprise Development. It is imperative to gain commitment from Business and IT for common objectives. There is also a need for business processes and concepts, decisions on development priorities and investments to ensure business continuity.
  • The IT function needs governance in order to ensure that the IT strategy, the operating model and competence support the achievement of corporate objectives. Furthermore, IT costs need to be well-managed and allocated appropriately, fairly and transparently.
  • New trends such as consumerism and virtualization emerge due to digitalization. Companies need to ensure business fit and cost-efficiency of services through efficient sourcing. There is a need to actively maintain quality and cost levels, for a strong negotiating position and market price awareness.
  • Many organizations have more and more development initiatives which are scoped beyond projects and therefore need a Development Management Office because Project Management Office oversees mainly just projects. Development Portfolio Steering has the mandate to approve or reject the classified and prioritized development initiatives.
  • The impact of digitalization to business include adding speed and agility to reliability and scalability. Additionally, there is a need to consider integration and compliance with corporate data and security policies. One of the most important tasks of IT is to provide services that efficiently support the business. There is a direct link between the quality of IT services and business efficiency, since more and more business processes are supported by IT services.

 

The deployment of IT Standard is executed in iterative steps. The process starts with a maturity assessment that is performed for all functions described in the IT Standard. The assessment is used to identify the needs for development and for fixing them one by one according to their level of urgency.

When IT is managed in accordance with the IT Standard, companies can ensure business continuity. It is capable of informing businesses of new opportunities and innovations made possible by advanced information technology systems. By following the IT Standard, risks and challenges brought forth by digitalization can be mitigated. The IT Standard give basis for improved profitability and cost-efficiency of the company and creates the foundation for growth with the help of scalable solutions. More importantly, the joint development of the IT Standard guarantees a company with best practices from the various industries.

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