FIRST PILLAR: INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY STRATEGY FOR THE FUTURE

FIRST PILLAR: INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY STRATEGY FOR THE FUTURE

The world keeps changing and every business owner has essentially become an expert in Change Management.

T4A introduced the five pillars to you last week and outlined that we’d work through each pillar in finer detail over the next couple of months.

We believe that by examining these areas and properly understanding what’s involved, your business will continue to perform, even if the country’s economic foundations are in a transformation phase.

Over the next few months, we will examine each area in more detail to ensure your business has the IT continuity it needs to keep up with local and global industry challenges.

IT continuity is vital to overall business longevity; T4A can assist you with a strategy that ensures your business goals are still well within your reach.

We’ll begin by looking at your company’s Technology Strategy to assess whether your business model is supported by the best IT set up possible. For example:

  • What is your current IT strategy?
  • Do you have a written plan?
  • Does it integrate with your firm’s strategic plan? Is it transformative?

These questions often get a response like, “We don’t have a written plan, but we have an IT budget.”

There is nothing wrong with operating within a budget, but we recommend a one-to-three-year IT plan, along with an IT budget. Many firms are working with an IT project list, which is better than nothing, but the value of an IT plan comes from the actual planning process and getting the company to think differently about their future.

Put simply, a strategy is a set of directional statements intended to achieve specific goals and objectives, whereas a strategic plan turns direction into action, outlining a series of projects and initiatives designed to support the strategy.

Outlining the long-term objectives, as well as the short-term ways to achieve those goals, moves your IT provider from behaving reactively – responding to the needs of the day – to behaving more deliberately and innovatively with a focus on supporting the overall priorities of the practice. This transformation occurs because of the strategic plan, which accomplishes the following:

  • It clearly articulates the IT priorities of the practice.
  • It provides focus and alignment for all IT initiatives by linking them to specific business objectives.
  • It serves as a tool for negotiating with other stakeholders within the practice.
  • It aids in setting goals and marking progress – or lack thereof – through time.

Some critical questions you should ask during the planning process in developing an IT Strategy or Roadmap are:

1. What is the firm’s strategic vision and plan?
2. Why do we do what we do? Will it be relevant, and can we compete in three years?
3. Who will lead IT and to whom will they report?
4. What new services will we add to remain relevant as well as competitive?
5. What is the economic model to ensure we get a return on our IT investment?
6. What training will our people require to be “future- ready?” Do we have the right people in IT?
7. How much are we currently spending on IT and what should we spend to remain competitive?
8. What per cent of our current IT expenditures are focused on maintenance and what per cent on innovation?
9. Do we have an IT roadmap that we can easily explain to our firm and clients?
10. Do we have a process to ensure our firm is on the right path?

So, if you’re ready to make your business the best it can be by taking on a proactive, strategic approach with IT and addressing these points above, please call us for a collaborative discussion.

We will assist you with taking firm ownership of your future, regardless of today’s challenging economic climate. Let IT strategy be the foundation you need for flexible business operation to ensure ongoing company profitability.