The constraint of limited budgets resonates with IT departments across the globe and prevents them from executing more projects and providing more value for the business. There are two primary reasons that budgets are insufficient. First, the department budget is determined by someone other than the IT department and results in an insufficient amount. Second, the budget has inefficiencies within department operations or project deployment.
Sources of Inefficiency in IT Departments
It is common to divide IT resources into operational services and capital projects. Let’s break down each of these resources and outline steps that would lead to budgetary efficiency and success for each.
An increasing number of IT organizations are adopting ticketing and ITSM tools. For businesses without these platforms, there is a lack of accountability and an absence of control over time and action. This leads to a lack of metrics, projects that are unable to be tracked, and reports that are not based on the complete picture. For leaders facing this scenario, they are working blindly, lacking key information to help them, their team, and their businesses succeed.
Without a ticketing system in place, companies only have access to qualitative measurements of the performance of their systems and their staff. There is no easy way to improve IT performance without an ITSM accountability system, and those organizations will continue to exhibit low operational maturity and budgetary inefficiencies.
There are steps centered around improving service operations that we recommend your business consider when looking to try and improve efficiency within your IT department.
Steps to Success in Service Operations
- Implement a ticketing system
- Establish effective definitions and processes for incidents and problems
- Establish good practice metrics
- Track and promote performance openly
- Continue to acquire tools for improved diagnostics and resolution
- Work as a team to identify performance improvements
- Improve the skills of the hiring managers in identifying talent
- Formally train managers and executives in accountability and leadership
- Provide annual technical training for all IT team members
- Replace low performers
- Reward performance frequently
Capital projects represent an enormous opportunity to reclaim the budget. The budgetary waste can manifest in the form of poor project planning, the purchase of systems that aren’t completely suitable for the infrastructure, or even just basic IT assumptions from a lack of information.
Before you begin your next capital project, we recommend walking through these steps in order to protect your business and your budget. By eliminating efficiencies in the budget surrounding your capital project, you can save time, financial discrepancies, and any future headaches as a result of a stressful project.
Steps to Success in Capital Projects
- Identify the goals.
- What are we trying to resolve or achieve?
- All projects should either resolve an issue or a problem. Projects should reduce expenditures, raise revenues, reduce risk, improve service, or build a competitive advantage.
- Perform a readiness assessment.
- What do we have currently and what needs to change to deliver the project?
- If you have a partner involved, place the responsibility of the assessment onto them, and be clear about performance expectations and measurements.
- Detail the project plan.
- Architect writes a high-level statement of work (SoW).
- Implementation teams (internal or external) write detailed SoW’s for their components.
- Peer review of the design by implementation teams prior to project acceptance.
- Project plan tickets should be mapped directly from the detailed SoW’s.
- Include a review of the procurement optimization process.
- Procurement optimization leads to substantially reduced capital and support costs.
- Be mindful of vendor management. Keep communications clear.
- Ongoing project management and accountability responsibilities.
- Engineers are responsible for daily ticket performance.
- The project manager is responsible for communicating daily performance for engineering managers.
- Engineering managers are responsible for assigning a task to the engineer capable of completing the work.
- Post-lesson review and analysis.
- All projects should conclude by convening a team to review each step of the capital project.
- Identify and document all lessons learned to improve the process for future projects.
If your business is interested in learning more about how our Service Desk ticketing system benefits our managed service clients, please click here. If you have a capital project coming up and would like a free estimate from a member of the Advanticom team, please contact our sales department here.