Staying up-to-date and efficient as an IT group within a constantly changing, growing, and evolving business is more than tricky. There is not only the possibility of being forgotten about, but of eventually alienating the very business you support, becoming more of a bother than a benefit. Shane O'Neill has the prescription for what ails IT, and it comes from 5 helpful tips that all of IT should take to heart. First, build a steering committee for IT, enhancing IT's influence in the overall business and allowing for some helpful self-promotion of beneficial work and goals. Next is discipline: enforcement of project management best practices and regulation may mean your projects get smaller, but you'll also do the right work at the right time. One tip that often goes without mention (but perhaps is the most important) comes from John Baschab, senior VP of management services at Technisource : A CIO must do whatever possible to reduce finger-pointing across departments, says Baschab. Members of the IT department need to get along with business users (or try very hard) and collaborate with them regularly. If you don't engage with business users, you should not get promoted, says Baschab. “Effective business user relationships should be part of the appraisal and promotion process for all IT team members,” he says. How to mend the fence? Take business unit managers to lunch at least twice a week, according to Baschab.