A Publication of WTVP

Every department and every employee should be focused on increasing shareholder value for your firm. According to CIO magazine last month, the information technology (IT) department is taking its turn on the hot seat as CEOs, CFOs, and boards have increased the attention paid to building business cases to garner precious financial and human capital to make investments in new processes and tools.

So why is the IT department in the hot seat? IT has a perception problem. In some cases, the company executive views IT as a cost center, not as a resource to improve the business. In other cases, the IT director may have limited experience in being able to identify, justify, and build a business case. Without a strong business case, funding won't be made available.

Case in point: A recent CIO magazine article said a CIO's biggest internal challenge was building business cases with requests for new projects, business cases that justify the expense versus hard dollar and soft dollar benefits. In most cases, outside consulting firms were hired to do the analysis because many firms just don't have the required expertise to speak to top business executives and outline business case justifications.

In many instances, key projects have been stalled, as top executives are trying to understand the business impacts of potential solutions and are struggling with identifying what productivity improvements could be gained. Projects need executive sponsors that are convinced investments will have benefits to the shareholders. Without support from the top, these initiatives will likely fail.

If your organization is struggling with aligning your business and understanding the valuable impact of new technology and business processes, where do you go for help? We're very fortunate that within reach are a couple of really great organizations, such as the following:

The investment to join these organizations is nominal, so I encourage your company to contact them. IBI