Four Shortfalls of IT Delivery
Although the importance and the need for innovation and delivery through information technology have grown in recent years, some of the IT delivery requests do not yield the results and the benefits expected by the customers involved. It is crucial to understand why.
During 2017 we have conducted Cream Chargers Delivery surveys to get feedback from business units on their assessment of the quality of the IT delivery during the year. The results of the surveys were balanced in relation to the effectiveness of IT delivery, but a few common themes were consistently highlighted which need to be addressed as critical areas of weakness and which will be discussed in this article.
We mainly identified top four shortfalls of IT delivery:
I) Lack of a clear “agreement” between the IT team and the business units:
Often business units will go directly into finding the solution to an issue without thoroughly understanding the problem that is being addressed or the benefits of the solution. In order for an IT delivery to be successful an “Agreement document” needs to be prepared and accepted by the business unit with a clear description of the problem and a clear business case which includes a clear definition of the success factors for the project implementation.
An agreement document does not have to be a long drawn document, as the project document would include the details, but it is required to ensure that the final output of the IT delivery will meet the business unit’s request and ensure that both sides have a common understanding of the problem and of the relative solution. The document should include at least the following items:
Milestones: The milestones can be of type Customer Acceptance, Progress Measure, External Dependency and Benefits Realization. Milestones can occur beyond the end date of the initiative, especially for Benefit Realization. There should be at least 3 customer satisfaction milestones, at the start, middle and end.
Budget and estimated costs.