The key challenge for CIOs is to demonstrate the business value of IT
Many CIOs think that business values high ROI projects. They are wrong.
Projects aren't enough for business value
Projects can be carried out by anyone, inside or outside your organization. Even successful projects aren't enough to demonstrate your business value. So what is business value about?
Business value means having a positive brand for your department. In other words, business value equates to trust, and trust comes from having satisfied users.
The good news is that you can dramatically increase user satisfaction without satisfying every demand that every user has. Here’s how.
The basics come first
“We’re wasting all this money on new applications and they can’t even get my computer to work right.”
— Actual user comment
Before you can be strategic, you have to provide basic services, such as computer reliability and performance.
Of course, your resources are limited, and not all users have the same demands about their equipment. That’s why you need to find out where to focus your resources for the greatest impact. We recommend doing this with PÜLS, our monthly user satisfaction survey.
After the basics, it's all about alignment
“They seem to forget we exist.”
— VP Operations
Your users are not just the business people in corporate. They are also in HR, in finance, and in every other department. If these users aren’t satisfied, projects won't succeed, tools won't get used, and your business value won’t grow.
But different users have different needs. You have to know which unique services each department requires, and you have to know which people inside those departments need to be happy.
We’ve developed a process called ALÏGN to help you service your users better. We can coach you to ensure that you take the right steps to keep various departments happy and to make IT a success company-wide.
The outcome is a positive brand for IT
“50% of CEO believe corporate service leaders are not behaving as partners”
— Harvard Business Review
What happens when you do a good job providing basic IT services, and when you are aligned with the unique needs of various departments?
You develop a positive brand. You become seen as a partner rather than as an obstacle. In other words, people are willing to pay more to work with you, rather than paying more so they don't have to work with you.
And what's the outcome of a positive brand?
Projects succeed more often. The IT leader's position expands. The satisfaction within the IT department increases. Even the IT budget expands. In short, the value of IT is recognized throughout the company.