Two Key Ingredients To A Successful I.T. Strategic Plan
Before entering into an I.T. Strategic Planning session there are two key areas of your business you need to be well versed, it will make or break your plan. Prepare your team and arm them with the right information, they will develop a sound strategy that may only require minor corrections 3 – 5 years down the road. Every plan needs to be updated and adjusted as to ensure it is inline with the business needs.
I’m not going to go into great detail here but you will get the picture, there are many steps in developing a sound strategy and it’s up to you, The Leader, to ensure you equip your team with as much information as possible. Without the right tools & information the exercise will take twice as long and you will most likely never provide solutions for your organization, hence you may not be kept on for a second shot at it.
As a Leader in your organization you know what it means to be well informed and it’s no different for this team, in order for the strategic team to be successful you must be able to articulate the companies business plan in simple terms. Your team needs to understand the company objectives and how they originally planned to achieve them, otherwise there is no target, no way to know which direction to go, this business plan is a compass. If you do not know or someone on your I.T. Strategic Planning Team is not privy to this information, stop and get it, this information will set the tone of your plan. Get a strong understanding of this business plan at high level at the minimum, as it is must have information.
You must know ALL your organizations business processes. What are the processes that take place in one business day to get the job done for each department in your company. This is important to know because you’ll want an inventory of all processes so they can be reviewed to determine which ones can and can not be automated. This key is also critical in order to find the right ERP solution for your organization should that be identified as a project in your I.T. Plan for the next 3 – 5 years. Some call this the pulse of the business, it is the oil, the workflow that determines profitability or the lack of, you need to get a good handle on this item to ensure you are identifying, addressing and eliminating broken parts of your system or systems.
As you can see the above are preliminary but are essential if you want to be of value to your organizations future success. You also need to have a good understanding of these two keys for step one in designing your I.T. Strategic Plan, step one is the Vision / Mission of your I.T. Department. Without that understanding it will hamper your efforts to find your voice, to articulate your vision to those who are looking to you to solve and provide the best service possible to the whole organization.
Feel free to leave your comments and input, if you wish to hire Owen to help you develop an I.T. Strategic Plan simpy e-mail me at: email@example.com