IT Best PracticesProject Portfolio Management

IT Governance: Determining Who Decides

Do you know who makes the decisions in your company? No, not just the big picture decisions, I mean the person or people who decide when to upgrade servers, who should lead projects, and how to promote best practices and processes in the IT group. This PDF from EDUCAUSE   and written by Andrew J. Clark of Syracuse University explores IT governance in regards to the decision makers and the decisions that need to be made. By way of example, Clark discusses the importance of understanding what decisions need to be made: how to create business value, what guidelines to follow, what applications are needed, and how much to invest and where. Following the choices on what decision need to be made, organizations need to determine who has input into those decisions — who has the rights to make a final call: Once the scope has been defined, the next step is to identify just who is involved in the decision making and how they are involved. Both the “who” and the “how” of involvement are critical to the success of IT governance, especially in the shared governance approach in higher education. Different people, or different groups of people, will need to be involved in the various IT decisions that must be made. And, for each person or group, just how each will be involved must be decided, agreed upon, and communicated throughout the enterprise. Each person or group may simply provide input into a decision or they may be involved in considering all the input and making the decision (specifically, they may make the decision and be accountable for it). The PDF goes on to explain ways to form decisions and enact them, utilizing a study at Syracuse University wherein the current approach to IT governance was examined. From this point in the PDF, the information becomes very specific to IT governance within a university system, but it’s still very valuable to anyone who wants to gain insights into ways to evaluate their own governance structure and identify weak elements. The end of the PDF includes a set of key questions that provide a great way to begin the conversation within your IT group.

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