Information technology permeates every aspect of the business, so leaving it unchecked can be detrimental to an organization’s success. This is where a proper IT governance (ITG) structure comes into play. Effective execution of an IT governance strategy not only ensures compliance and reduces risks but also enables IT to better support business goals, leading to growth and innovation. And with COVID-19 further introducing more challenges, IT governance became an even higher priority from last year according to Gartner’s Audit Plan Hot Spots report. But despite offering so many benefits and its continuous significance, IT teams still often fall prey to IT governance mishaps.
As part of our ITSM hacks series to help you optimize your ITSM processes, we’re looking at the 7 deadly sins of IT governance IT teams commit.
Sin #1: Leaders not fully on board
How can you align IT with business objectives when your leaders aren’t on board with your IT governance strategy? It’s hard to progress when people don’t know what’s going on, even more so when they aren’t aware of why it matters and how they can contribute. ITG falls under the umbrella of corporate governance, so it’s in the organization’s best interest that everyone is on the same page. The CIO plays an important role in driving this forward and providing fellow executives with the information and support needed to spread ITG best practices across the business.
Sin #2: Ignorance of industry-specific legislations and regulations
While some legislative and regulatory requirements apply to all organizations, there are some that only apply depending on what industry your company belongs in. Ignorance of this set of rules spells serious trouble for an organization. Failing to comply not only results in legal risks but also loss of trust among customers when these mistakes are exposed to the public. It’s therefore essential to consider the different combinations of compliance needs when formulating your IT governance plans.
Sin #3: Not taking advantage of ITG frameworks
You need a good foundation that enables your organization to grow and innovate. IT governance is exactly that, but it doesn’t have to mean creating something new. Trying to come up with strategies for your IT governance from scratch is more of a headache than it’s worth. There are numerous tried and tested frameworks that you can leverage to plan the processes that match well with your organization’s needs and goals. Examples of these are ITIL, COBIT, and ISO/IEC 27002.
Sin #4: Not using the right tech solution
Technology makes things easier, and this applies to IT governance, too. But if you’re not using the right solution for the job, this can have the opposite effect. The latest tech solution can be tempting with its flashy features, or the opposite can happen too. Maybe the legacy software you’ve been using for years seems to work fine and why fix something that’s not broken? But not having the correct technology that fully supports your IT governance processes can only hinder your efforts. Eventually, you may find yourself having to change tools anyway due to the wrong fit, which will be a huge drain of time and energy. If you’re exploring the market for the right solution, check out this guide for some of our tips on finding the best match.
Sin #5: Outdated policies
We’ve seen a lot of changes in the workplace over the last few years. The pandemic meant companies have had to move quickly to tackle these challenges. In turn, the workforce has become more flexible in where, when, and how they work. With organizations in firefighting mode during that time, it’s not surprising that policy reviews may have taken a backseat for a while. But it shouldn’t be like that for long. If your workforce used to operate on-site only but has transitioned into hybrid/remote working, your policies need to reflect that change. With remote working, information is distributed across different places and environments. So, it’s imperative that all of this is considered in your governance strategies and policies updated accordingly.
Sin #6: Insufficient IT performance monitoring
The success of your IT governance strategies is also reliant on the health of your IT infrastructure. Insufficient monitoring of the performance of your IT systems can hinder improvements you’re looking to make. Regular inspection of how robust your IT environment is enables you to identify areas where you can better align with your plans. When thinking about your organization’s IT performance, it’s important to consider if all your systems, applications, processes, and assets are working well and fit well within your IT governance structure.
Sin #7: Lack of continuous improvements
Despite its importance to the business, it can be easy to forget that IT governance is not a one-time thing. Implementing IT governance processes is an ongoing activity and should be kept in mind for any strategic decision-making. Your IT governance should adapt to the changes that occur in your organization and this means constantly looking out for areas to improve. Continuous improvements in how you run your operations not only enable your people to work productively but also minimize instances of firefighting by staying ahead of the curve.
Avoid these IT governance sins with IFS assyst
As we incorporate more advanced technologies into our arsenal, the more important it is to get IT governance right. Don’t be a sinner and establish IT governance best practices with IFS assyst. Helping hundreds of enterprises transform their IT management and ESM capabilities, IFS assyst can provide complete visibility and control over your IT infrastructure and automate key governance processes.
See how your organization can get started by booking a free online demo today!