Where do you and your company stand today in relation to an IT strategy?
Step 1: Determining the status quo. We work with the team to determine the maturity level of IT use to date. The IT organisation, the IT service, the IT applications (mostly ERP software), as well as the characteristics of the previous and future IT projects are examined and presented as a result. Strengths and weaknesses become clear very quickly and give indications of possible focal points.
Step 2: The analysis of the corporate strategy is used as the basis and derivation of challenges for the IT strategy. The classic instruments such as Porter's 5-Forces Competitive Analysis as well as portfolio management tools are used. In the process, the business processes and the requirements of the customers for the services as well as the expected value-added processes for the customer are examined in the specialised departments. From this, a first rough vision of an IT strategy is developed.
Designing the IT strategy
Step 3: Design application strategy. Based on the information and data collected and available, the life cycle of individual applications is presented and completed with the help of portfolio management. Based on this assessment of the maturity level of an application, an evaluation is made for all programmes in use. This usually includes the assessment of core programmes such as ERP software, associated extensions, independent third-party programmes and infrastructure programmes.
From this, courses of action develop such as: Continue Use, Replace, Modernise (Upgrade). These options for action are given the parameters of time and priority and ordered in a programme roadmap. The result is a representation of what a future application portfolio and programme landscape oriented to the new challenges should look like, based on a status quo analysis.
Step 4: Define sourcing strategy (cloud strategy). In this step, the IT strategy is elaborated in the context of sourcing or a possible cooperation with external partners. Fundamental questions about the use of cloud solutions, make-or-buy scenarios, hybrid solutions for mixed operation in the own data centre or with external service providers, as well as necessary service level agreements are part of the outcome of the sourcing strategy.
Step 5: Requirements for the IT organisation and IT governance within the framework of an IT strategy. Based on the future requirements to support the business processes, it is shown how the IT strategy can be implemented on the basis of the demand/supply model. It is taken into account that all business goals are reflected in the requirements of the IT strategy. Within the framework of IT governance, it is examined whether the relevant requirements of the GDPR, data security and IT security are taken into account in the development of the IT strategy.
The role of the head of IT (CIO) is also defined in the process. In companies with several locations, the question is also clarified as to which services are performed centrally and which IT services are performed decentrally. This is also examined with regard to the support of business applications (e.g. ERP software). Based on a gap analysis, the derived personnel strategy will show whether the employees with the right skills can make the future IT strategy effective.
Step 6: In this step, the implementation of the developed IT strategy begins. The creation of a roadmap starts on the basis of the previous steps 1 to 5 and shows which measures and projects need to be in the pipeline for the next 3-5 years. Based on this roadmap, a rough cost estimate is made. It is checked whether all measures are realistic and financially feasible. With the help of portfolio management, an assessment and prioritisation of upcoming projects is carried out. This ensures that only those projects are realised that offer the company a competitive advantage.
Step 7: In order to successfully implement an IT strategy, it is important to define the success criteria, milestones and KPIs. For this purpose, the OKR methodology is used to define the KPIs. Communication to staff and project participants is aligned and linked to the roadmap, both technically and in terms of time. Measures for supporting and accompanying the employees in change management are worked out and are thus available to the management for the decision on the adoption of the IT strategy.