Organisations have become increasingly dependent on technology, networks and outsourced service contracts. Unmanaged, these dependencies can expose your business to risks such as reduced systems availability, reduced service levels, damage to reputation, increased customer churn rates and possible legal action against accountable people in your organisation. Managing risk through technology change governance is essential.
Enterprise Architecture frameworks such as TOGAF & Zachmann ensure goverance plays a key part in the alignment of technology investment with key business goals and ensures that risk and return remain in balance. We provide training, project, packaged & advisory services and support throughout the whole governance life cycle. From framework design, implementation and validation to audit and compliance monitoring.
Why add governance to your IT change? Well, for starters good governance:-
- Provides a structured approach to identify and clarify underlying key dependencies in people, process and technology
- Drives successful implementation of business strategy and associates the underlying technology and supplier relationships
- Delivers a framework of control that allows management to identify key technology related threats and opportunities
- Controls costs and IT spend focusing investments on strategic value rather than duplicated tactical initiatives
- Tailors your management information and performance reporting regimes
- Ensures there is accountability for all activities involving information and technology assets for audit and improvement
- Enables easier organisational change such as merger and acquisition activity or outsourcing services
Governance of IT change is necessary because reducing technology risk depends on more than just the investment in good technology. Good governance supports a mechanism to manage the behaviours, responsibilities, accountabilities, access and disclosure required to create and utilise your information resources effectively.
Effective governance such as COBIT (Control Objectives for Information & Related Technology) utilises a proactive and integrated framework of management control that fully supports and enables both day-to-day and strategic management. An effective management or governance framework requires that responsibilities and accountabilities are clearly defined and owned by appropriate people within the organisation. It also requires the identification of the critical aspects of your IT service delivery and provides assurance that risks associated with these are fully managed.
Good governance will measure up to internal and external challenge and audit. Internally, via an established process of compliance and externally via third party validation or audit. Recent well publicised events have placed governance very high on the agenda of executives and have triggered a range of regulatory, legislative and disclosure requirements (e.g. SOX, BASEL, PCI-DSS, GLBA). Good governance requires that management are aware of these requirements and ensure that their organisation is meeting them. The penalties for failure can be harsh. We offer assessment and audit services for most of the major compliance regulations.
Ignoring technology governance will expose your organisation to liabilities that go beyond missing a project deadline – exposure can lead to lower returns, missed opportunities and, as research has shown, reduced market capitalisation. Weak governance can lead to lost reputation and ultimately criminal proceedings.
Contact The S&A Group for an informal conversation about our Governance Services. Check out our COBIT or Outsourcing Governance Training Courses