1
Bridging the gap between Business and IT for
maximum effectiveness
Presented to WA I.T. Leaders Summit
By: Steve Mitchin...
2
Session Outline
Part 1 - A quick look at future business trends supporting the
customer experience
Part 2 - The IT team ...
3
The Top 5 Opportunities
Forget the hype – what can we all do to improve the customer experience
• Moving the Back to the...
4
Why the relationship between IT & BU’s is important
Business Strategy
Vision/goals/identity
Products/services
Customers/...
5
Why the relationship is important
• Getting support for new IT investment is one of the most pressing, and expensive
cha...
6
The Power of Partnerships
Sometimes it feels like we’re trying to mix oil and water
But bringing technology to the busin...
7
Why does disengagement happen?
"Nick Burns, Your Company's Computer Guy"
 Nick Burns was the subject of a recurring ske...
8
Why do managers think disengagement happens?
1. Some IT pros frequently use jargon to confuse nontechnical business mana...
9
Why do Management think disengagement happens?
2. Some IT professionals deploy technologies that do more to
consolidate ...
10
Why do Management think disengagement happens?
3. Veteran IT professionals can be the biggest roadblock to implementing...
11
Why do IT Managers think disengagement happens?
1. Lack of technical understanding amongst managers.
• Business unit ma...
12
7 Traits of Unsuccessful IT Managers
1. Eagerly reach beyond competency level
• It is important to match good technical...
13
7 Traits of Unsuccessful IT Managers
5. Acquire technology simply because it's new
• CIOs who upgrade just because it's...
14
10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders
10. Good supply management capability
• Successful supply management, working with t...
15
10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders
7. Managing expectations effectively
• A good CIO will be able to do internal market...
16
10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders
4. Ability to rally the troops
• Being a strong motivator can help build a strong te...
17
Good Business Unit Leaders will....
Suggestions from the best IT Leader I ever worked with
1. Engage IT early on in the...
18
1. Create a list of X items to be done and mark each one of them as critical or number one
2. Be afraid to challenge th...
19
Conclusion
“A true partnership between the business unit and IT is a
powerful tool
It can give both players a seat at t...
20
It’s all about communication
21 Page 21
So why are there gaps
The benefits of becoming Whole Brained
22
I had a great relationship with my IT manager
…and his team
I clearly articulated my needs, and now I have a computer t...
23
Thank You
For Further information contact:
BBB Advisory Interactive Intelligence
Steve Mitchinson Michael Stangroom
M: ...
24
Clients we have assisted
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Building relationships between IT and the business - it is not that hard!!!

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All too often the breakdown in communication between business units and IT is the cause of great frustration and inefficiency. Rather to than perpetuating the blame game, do something about it because it really is not that hard to fix - if you want to! Here are some thought on how both sides might improve the relationship

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Building relationships between IT and the business - it is not that hard!!!

  1. 1. 1 Bridging the gap between Business and IT for maximum effectiveness Presented to WA I.T. Leaders Summit By: Steve Mitchinson Director, BBB Advisory
  2. 2. 2 Session Outline Part 1 - A quick look at future business trends supporting the customer experience Part 2 - The IT team is the first port of call when you are trying to meet customer needs and expectations So ... How do we bridge the gap between Business and IT for maximum effectiveness How do we bridge the gap between process and people
  3. 3. 3 The Top 5 Opportunities Forget the hype – what can we all do to improve the customer experience • Moving the Back to the front – Organising business around the customer - not historical structures – Applying ―front office‖ visibility and methods to the back office • Using the mountains of data we already possess – Why is this resource so under utilised • Empowering the front line – What is stopping us • Recognising the customer – It is the least you can do – If you don’t they will reach out to someone who does • Embrace mobile technology – it’s no longer your choice – The customer is now in control
  4. 4. 4 Why the relationship between IT & BU’s is important Business Strategy Vision/goals/identity Products/services Customers/markets Competitive position Business Unit Strategy BUpositioning & value Processes Organisation Media Metrics Technology Strategy What Technology When Benefits Architecture Integration Drives Drives Executes Enables
  5. 5. 5 Why the relationship is important • Getting support for new IT investment is one of the most pressing, and expensive challenges facing business leadership • Process automation and business process improvement is a focus area for businesses of all sizes, across all industries. • As customers continue to be given more and more options and channels to communicate with the enterprise, they in turn become better educated about what they should expect. • As a result, they require increasingly sophisticated and efficient delivery of services • With a substantial number of Australian businesses intending (or being forced) to have some degree of customer self management or automation in place by 2015, this makes the need for strong bonds between the business units & IT a critical success factor
  6. 6. 6 The Power of Partnerships Sometimes it feels like we’re trying to mix oil and water But bringing technology to the business can be both exciting and daunting A true partnership between business centre leaders and IT can turn: ―exciting & daunting‖ into ―effective and doable‖
  7. 7. 7 Why does disengagement happen? "Nick Burns, Your Company's Computer Guy"  Nick Burns was the subject of a recurring sketch on ―Saturday Night Live‖ based on a caricature of the stereotypically condescending computer expert.  There were two other recurring lines in the sketches: • At the beginning of the segment, whenever it is mentioned that Nick Burns is coming into the office, one character mutters, "I don't like that guy", • At the end of the segment, Burns exits, and comes back sarcastically yelling, "Oh by the way, YOU'RE WELCOME!‖ Worth a watch, as it explains why it is easy for both sides to “stereotype” and explains (at least in part) why these conflict situations exist unnecessarily
  8. 8. 8 Why do managers think disengagement happens? 1. Some IT pros frequently use jargon to confuse nontechnical business managers to either justify their recommendations, or hide the fact that they screwed up • Like all managers, all IT pros -- even the very best -- screw things up once in a while. • Some take advantage of the fact that business managers (and even some high-level technical managers) don't have a good understanding of technology, and so will use jargon to confuse them when explaining why a problem or an outage occurred, or why your recommendation wont work. • As managers and staff are becoming more technically literate this can be a death warrant to the relationship Adapted from : Working in IT: 10 dirty little secrets, Jason Hiner, TechRepublic
  9. 9. 9 Why do Management think disengagement happens? 2. Some IT professionals deploy technologies that do more to consolidate their own power than to help the business Another subtle but blameworthy thing that some IT professionals do is select and implement technologies based on: • How well those technologies make the business dependent on IT • The personal relationships they have with vendors • How good they will look telling their industry colleagues about the ―bleeding edge‖ deployment rather than which ones are truly best for the business itself. Adapted from : Working in IT: 10 dirty little secrets, Jason Hiner, TechRepublic
  10. 10. 10 Why do Management think disengagement happens? 3. Veteran IT professionals can be the biggest roadblock to implementing new technologies • Like all managers, CIO’s must keep abreast of the IT evolution. • They must be aware of the changing vendor landscape and capability • They can be too beholden to the incumbent – is it an “easy” option • Some enterprises could implement more leading edge stuff than they do. • One of the roadblocks to migrating to new technologies is not budget constraints or management objections; it can be the veteran techies in the IT department. • ―Voice‖ isn’t what it used to be ! Adapted from : Working in IT: 10 dirty little secrets, Jason Hiner, TechRepublic
  11. 11. 11 Why do IT Managers think disengagement happens? 1. Lack of technical understanding amongst managers. • Business unit managers despite their lack of tech savvy, think they know it all. • Managers technical expertise sometimes only extends to the last industry or vendor presentation they attended 2. Poorly Defined Business Case • Too often the business assumes the IT department knows what they want • The business fails to put the necessary effort into the scoping document or discussions, and then blames IT for getting it wrong 3. Failure to respect IT’s knowledge • Some managers fail to recognise them for the benefits delivered • Fail to seek guidance or engagement appropriately or at the appropriate stages
  12. 12. 12 7 Traits of Unsuccessful IT Managers 1. Eagerly reach beyond competency level • It is important to match good technical sense with good business sense, not using the operating environment as a personal development environment, or expecting the company to be driven by technology instead of supported by it. 2. Act as CMOs—Chief Marketing Officers • CIOs who indulge in this habit not only develop products and solutions no one wants, they also think they know better than marketing how to sell anything. This has become a much bigger issue as the web drives so many marketing initiatives 3. Fail to understand relationship between technology and business • Failing to understand how technology and business can work together - the goal of (most) business is not technology, it is to make money. 4. Don't communicate well with non-techs • They forget that most of the their audience don't understand technology, and often hire others with this same very bad habit. They must hire and train people to communicate with nontechnology people in order to demonstrate their value
  13. 13. 13 7 Traits of Unsuccessful IT Managers 5. Acquire technology simply because it's new • CIOs who upgrade just because it's time to upgrade. When this habit manifests itself in this way, the unsuccessful CIO fails to realize there are sound business reasons to review, such as cost ,does it meet customer needs, overcoming data compatibility issues • Alternatively, some CIO’s, because they're interested in a technology try to find a way to work it into their businesses for that reason- not because it makes good business sense 6. Exhibit a knee-jerk reaction against alternatives • Unwillingness to consider suggestions from management, options like open standards software, emerging voice platforms. There is still a view amongst some CIOs and CTOs that if it's free, or much cheaper it's no good 7. Create solutions in search of a problem • The CIO with this habit will build products or provide services because they can, not because the company, or anyone else, needs them.. It dazzles the IT department – but no-one else!
  14. 14. 14 10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders 10. Good supply management capability • Successful supply management, working with those outside the company, particularly service and product vendors, who may not have your company’s best interest at heart • They do it at every stage 9. A solid understanding of financials • Having to understand a company’s financial climate is a dramatic shift away from the ―back office‖ days—only a few years ago—when CIOs limited their involvement to their department. Even more, the CIO must be able explain how the IT department can not only pay for itself but deliver improved financial performance. 8. Ability to think strategically to support the business’s goals and objectives • Ability to think strategically and use IT to reach company goals and objectives. Ensuring they bring technical services and solutions to meet the business’s needs and to help the enterprise meet its goals and objectives. Have the vision to see where the business is going, and making IT strategy relevant to the company’s initiatives.
  15. 15. 15 10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders 7. Managing expectations effectively • A good CIO will be able to do internal marketing of IT’s ability to help a company reach its goals and objectives. This is best achieved by having a team that can think on its feet and develop company solutions and strategies. 6. Tech savvy • It’s possible for a department of IT experts to be managed by a person who isn't technically inclined. Being technically savvy usually helps a CIO stand out - they need to know their field and how to leverage those technologies to help move the company forward, providing they embrace the other 9 traits. 5. Selecting a good team • While a CIO should possess technical skills, any ability he or she lacks could be recouped through the talent on his or her team. Choosing the best people for that team is a skill, and this is often a challenge, as is ensuring the ongoing development of that team to meet business needs .
  16. 16. 16 10 Traits of Successful IT Leaders 4. Ability to rally the troops • Being a strong motivator can help build a strong team – beyond the walls of IT. This can be as simple as CIOs expecting as much from their team as they do from themselves. 3. Visionary outlook • A CIO must be very forward-thinking and be able to see the company not only moving forward but visualising it already being there. To be able to look beyond where you are today, know where the business is going, position the IT department to help the enterprise get there 2. Politically astute • Department politics can be an obstacle or an asset to all of us. Like all managers, a CIO must be able to strike a delicate balance between building alliances and making good business decisions. 3. Skilled communicator • This is clearly is the most important. The reason is simple: CIOs can possess the other nine leadership qualities but if they cannot communicate well, across the wider business they will never be great CIOs.
  17. 17. 17 Good Business Unit Leaders will.... Suggestions from the best IT Leader I ever worked with 1. Engage IT early on in the planning phase (be it program of work, individual project or this FY’s strategic initiatives) or in business strategy sessions 2. Clearly communicate the business drivers (what are we trying to achieve – e.g. automate process X or reduce call handling time for transaction Y or remove voice interaction for query Z – enable self serve options etc) 3. Clearly communicate critical success factors for you as a business stakeholder (e.g. project spend < $XX, achieve delivery by X, see business benefit in QY etc) 4. Clearly highlight your priorities 5. Provide a forum where the propeller heads spend some time on the floor with the user base . Often written specifications don’t always translate the intent of what is trying to be achieved at a business level. 6. Set clear success criteria, measure the results and celebrate success
  18. 18. 18 1. Create a list of X items to be done and mark each one of them as critical or number one 2. Be afraid to challenge the proposed solution (not technically but at a business level) get the IT dept to clearly demonstrate how your business issues will be addressed through their solution/project etc 3. Sit on the fence, if you are asked to mediate business queries that get escalated then be sure to be a responsible stakeholder and provide direction (you’ll win a lot of respect from the team by doing this) 4. Leave the UAT process to a bunch of propeller heads - get in there as business people and own the result (you are the ones who will be trying to use any resulting system/process) 5. Fail to ask “Why?” Do not underestimate the value that an information worker can bring to your business through the questioning of established practices (being able to clearly answer the question “why” should be critical for every business manager) Good Business Unit Leaders will never .... Suggestions from my most respected IT Leader
  19. 19. 19 Conclusion “A true partnership between the business unit and IT is a powerful tool It can give both players a seat at the table for organisational initiatives. Most importantly, however, such a partnership can improve the overall customer experience – and all the associated benefits – and that’s good for everybody” Layne Holley, Managing Editor, CMI
  20. 20. 20 It’s all about communication
  21. 21. 21 Page 21 So why are there gaps The benefits of becoming Whole Brained
  22. 22. 22 I had a great relationship with my IT manager …and his team I clearly articulated my needs, and now I have a computer that works just the way I wanted...
  23. 23. 23 Thank You For Further information contact: BBB Advisory Interactive Intelligence Steve Mitchinson Michael Stangroom M: +61403001100 M: +61 428217532 E: steve.mitchinson@bbbadvisory.com.au E: michael.stangroom@inin.com W: www.bbbadvisory.com.au W: www.inin.com
  24. 24. 24 Clients we have assisted

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