IT Strategic Planning
Black Diamond Solutions, based in Chicago, provides IT consulting services, including IT Strategic Planning consulting to assist clients in capitalizing on their investment in information technology. The IT planning process should not be overlooked or discounted for any type of business. With the accelerated pace that the web has forced, all IT strategy planning activities should be placed at the front of the line, instead of the end.
At BDS, we are committed to ensuring that our clients are able to compete now, and in the future. As strategic planning consultants it is our business to know “what’s next” in IT. This includes all aspects of IT as it relates to strategic business planning. What good are all your IT expenditures if by next year or even in two years your IT vision is obsolete.
IT Strategic Planning Eliminates Obsolete IT Vision
Nothing is more frustrating to a CEO than finding out their investment in technology does not fit with their long range plans. Normally this is grounds for calling up another CIO or CTO from the bull pen. But there really is no need for rash extremes when adherence to sound IT Strategic Planning principles are adhered to. The stages include:
- Readiness Assessment – covers basic questions such as “Why are we doing this IT Strategic Plan?”, “How much will change as a result of implementing IT strategic planning.?” and “How well have previous planning efforts worked and what can we do differently to improve?”. The basic who, what, why, where and when are all laid out in this first crucial step that all others build upon.
- Corporate Mission, Vision, Values and Goals – addresses the ultimate goal of strategic planning initiatives. While these can be esoteric in nature, they give the boundaries that have been its borders and can represent breaking through those to new business models and streams of revenue.
- SWOT Analysis – identifying strengths, weaknesses opportunities and threats is essential to any planning process and leads to discovering where processes and infrastructure may be holding the enterprise back from achieving even greater success.
- Gap Analysis – how large are the gaps and can they be bridged with developing an IT strategy that recognizes the potential risks and rewards.
- IT and Organizational Objectives – based on the previous four stages, this becomes the backbone of the strategic plan. Measurable objectives give shape to your ultimate roadmap for success in an ever changing and evolving business and media environment. Weighting these objectives adds additional transparency to all stakeholders.
- Opportunities – identifying objectives leads to opportunities, which is the How of achieving them. Brainstorming is encouraged in this stage of the IT strategic planning process, but is tempered by distilling those that are actionable with allocated resources and those that still need further development to pass the risk-reward test.
- Strategic Initiatives and Processes – built from the previous stages, this is foundation for action. Budgets are allocated, and stakeholders collectively put their stamp on what they believe will be a path to expand the enterprise beyond its present boundaries. Processes are identified, evaluated and modified to fit within the framework of the planning objectives.
- Timelines for Action – here is where BDS shines, by being able to realistically assist in determining timelines that are met. Many a project has been blown off course by poor timeline scheduling and creating unnecessary dependencies and costs. Creating achievable, based on scope, IT talent and resources, BDS can also create reward systems that significantly increase productivity and effectiveness.
- Assignment and Project Tracking – without having assigned stakeholders to the various initiatives, being held responsible; projects can become nightmares quickly. By assigning accountability to specific players, everyone is aware of who is responsible for what critical piece of the puzzle. Deliverables and timelines are agreed upon and communicated.
- Measurement, Quality Assurance and Feedback Loops – these are essential for monitoring initiative’s progress and velocity. Benchmarks established in the earlier stages are now quantified and analyzed for ongoing optimization of processes and cost auditing. Feedback loops are comprised of KPI dashboards and scheduled project progress meetings.
- Communications and Knowledge Transfer – additionally, a matrix of secure online messaging, communication and project management platform options also connect stakeholders and project managers with data and documents for productive knowledge sharing and collaboration. Transfer of knowledge is essential for business continuity and long term success. Your vested employees not only will be informed, but be able to actively participate in ongoing optimization.
IT Strategic Planning Helps You Manage The Entire Business.
Black Diamond’s only business is in maximizing IT resources. IT strategic planning is a large part of our business and has led us to work with some of the top companies in their industries. Strategic consulting of business IT issues is where we can assist your company in effectively mitigating walls and roadblocks to help your company achieve its true potential. In today’s competitive landscape, companies failing to innovate, fail. Companies failing to implement strategic IT planning are destined to fall behind, not ahead.
Let BDS show you how we can help your company achieve greater results with less resources and in shorter time than you had imagined possible. Call us today at Call us today at 312-273-1830 to get started planning your next IT project, or click here to Contact Us.