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Examining and Aligning Your IT Strategy

Today’s businesses are continuously tasked with increasing competitiveness and optimizing the value of technology investments.

People, Processes & Technology

Today’s businesses are continuously tasked with increasing competitiveness and optimizing the value of technology investments. The most effective way to reach these goals and encourage growth within the organization is aligning people, processes and technology to best serve current and future needs. Undergoing an examination of your existing processes can add transparency and vision to your IT strategy, enabling you to accomplish your goals and objectives.

Many of our clients struggle getting the most value out of their current IT systems. Knowledge of system constraints and capabilities can be murky, ultimately impacting efficiency and finances. Available data and information is frequently not fully leveraged, while processes are often diverted to outside vendors or technology that could take place within existing systems. In the end, many organizations face challenges determining whether they need new systems, or if they can utilize their current platform better and optimize processes.

Increase Transparency

Instead of doing more with less, which is the goal of increased technology integration, the wrong strategy can handcuff your organization, without the right level of support. To address these concerns, McGladrey has developed the Rapid Assessment®, a quick-hit diagnostic tool to evaluate your current technology capabilities in relation to your needs. Rapid Assessment increases visibility into your back-office operations, providing greater transparency to align with your business needs.

Know the Signs

Several triggers exist that signal the need for an examination of your technology strategy, including:

• Evaluating new systems or considering a large IT investment – Before deciding to overhaul your IT systems, you must know whether your existing platform may be sufficient. If new systems are indeed necessary, additional insight is often needed to choose and implement improvements that fit your strategy and budget.

• Expanding your footprint – Whether regional, national or international, before launching expansion efforts, you must make sure you have the right back-office support to scale with growth.

• Personnel changes – Perhaps you have replaced your IT director or a key member of your technology team has left the company. An assessment helps determine the current state of your operations, any deficiencies and what adjustments are necessary to reach your goals.

• Confirm your structure is sound – Even if no major issues are currently occurring, your strategy should be evaluated on a periodic basis. Fully analyzing your systems, people and direction uncovers additional process efficiencies, any emerging issues and ensures your infrastructure is scaled properly.

A Road Map for Success

It is vital that you have an ongoing evaluation of your people, processes and technology — the foundation of your business. On a daily basis, you face unique threats to your efficiency, effectiveness and bottom-line results. Since challenges and key performance indicators are different for every organization, the assessment is flexible and geared to your specific needs and goals.

We determine whether you have the right pieces in place to grow and accomplish your objectives. If not, we develop a roadmap and recommendations that are aligned with your business plan. Implementing change is often difficult, but we provide a clear direction to ease any transition and guide your business to increased cost savings and productivity.

Case Study

A not-for-profit organization was confronted with many of the same technology challenges that businesses of all sizes and industries face each day. Its infrastructure struggled to keep up with day-to-day operations, and it also suffered business process inefficiencies and staffing issues. After meeting with the organization’s executive director, it was suggested that an assessment be done to:

• Analyze performance relative to peers

• Provide benchmarking and performance goals

• Discover actionable and sustainable quick-win opportunities

• Detail long-term planning for performance enhancements

• Develop a roadmap for strategic cost reduction

The team proposed both a conservative and aggressive plan for organizational optimization. After the board approved the aggressive approach, core improvements to the organization included:

• Increased staff mobility, enabling employees to work remotely

• Improved telecommunication capabilities

• A highly leveraged cloud environment to decrease overall costs

• A more friendly Web presence integrated with social media

• Stabilized IT costs

• Reduced IT staff and infrastructure complexity

RossKrusellPhoto_BW

Ross Krusell is McGladrey’s Technology Services Florida Practice Leader and has participated in numerous engagements with the DoD and DoJ. He can be reached at Ross.Krusell@McGladrey.com

 

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