Windward Insights

How to Develop a Business-Minded Approach to IT

Published Nov. 5, 2015
Written by Michele Darwin

better way sign

It sounds buzz-wordy, but there’s a definite need to delineate between the IT of old, and today’s implementations, which wisely have a much sharper focus on business needs.

IT used to kind of run the table. The tech experts could simply slip back in to their server rooms and claim they were doing what they could to keep systems up and everyone working. Execs and managers were lucky to have even an inkling about how things got done, to say nothing of whether or not there might be a better way to do it. IT was a bit mysterious, operating in a realm of black magic.

That’s all changed profoundly. Execs, managers, even sales and marketing teams, understand as much about what IT needs to be doing for business as anyone. Sure, they many not understand the “how” of it, but they know the “why”. And, ultimately, isn’t it the priority of any business to determine ways to do things better across the board, especially today?

That mentality has forced an alignment of IT capability and business performance objectives. Technology investments MUST demonstrate an ability to improve business operations, increase profitability, and reduce risks across an organization. This has driven the demand for a business-minded IT approach. We call it Service-Centric IT.

Here are the pressing IT initiatives that are driving its evolution:

  • Deploying IT as a Service– disruptive technology that includes real-time infrastructure, also known as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), cloud computing, and Software as a Service (SaaS).
  • Implementing IT Governance Across the IT Organization– mature organizations are using process frameworks like ITIL for process standardization and reporting.
  • Migrating to a Service-Based Delivery Model– end users are becoming increasingly savvy, requiring that the organization provide true end-to-end services and continual service improvement.
  • Measuring Performance in Business-Relevant Terms– data sources need to be consistent and ensure that timely information is readily available to business decision-makers.
  • Optimizing Costs for Delivering and Supporting IT– all aspects of the business need to be evaluated for cost-savings opportunities, from consolidating infrastructure to streamlining processes to managing vendors.

Maybe it’s time to take a good look at your organization’s IT operations and ask if there isn’t a better, more business-minded way to get things done.