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How to demonstrate the value of your IT

I've mentioned before about the great spam that I get sometimes. I'd really consider taking myself off these lists, except occasionally I read a gem that is worth looking at.

This week, I received a great one about demonstrating the value of your IT operations to your Director or CIO. I'll spare you the rest of the email (it was selling a measurement tool) but wanted to repeat this bit:

CIOs need more timely metrics, including context on historical performance in order to measure performance over time. You need tools to predict "what if" scenarios, such as the impact on revenue if a particular server or IT process is brought down. You need a broader variety of metrics, such as costs by service or resources, or resources by portfolio, budget or future demand. This allows you to answer important questions for the business, such as, how is the investment in IT innovation allocated by line of business? And how have those investments trended over time? Or what is the variance between projected and actual ROI for each IT service category over time?

[...]

With the right performance metrics you can measure and quantify what's important to the business, rather than IT. You can focus on what the business needs and values rather than operational metrics that don't reveal much about business performance. BI for the CIO helps you:

* Measure and continually improve the cost efficiency for all of IT
* Understand IT changes in business terms, such as lost revenue if a service is disabled
* Better align IT resources with business problems
* Continually improve IT processes


There's some great wisdom, there. This hits a lot of high points with me. The spam talks about understanding the impact to your operations if a system is down unexpectedly, and about providing a way to grok what's happening in your organization (for example, that's why Tdocs are so important here.)