Books Read: “Managing the Information Technology Resource”, Luftman   Leave a comment


A quite comprehensive book. Luftman knows what he is talking about due to his long career in IT as CIO, IBM consultant and academic.

In typical left-brained fashion, this book is full of lists!

The first two chapters deal with IT strategy. This is quite understandable for at the core of the IT function is (or at least should be) the IT strategy. The IT strategy enables, or drives, the business strategy. The clear implication is that there must be strategic alignment between the business & its IT function.

Which leads to the Strategic Alignment Maturity Model:
1. Initial/Ad Hoc process
2. Committed process
3. Established Focus process
4. Improved/Managed process
5. Optimised process

With the following criteria for each level of the maturity model:
– communications
– competency/value
– governance
– partnership
– scope & architecture
– skills

In developing the IT strategy, the concerns and related decisions are about:
– external domain:
  – scope of the firm’s technology
  – systemic competencies
  – IT governance
– internal domain
  – IT architecture
  – IT organisational processes
  – IT skills

These concerns can be summarised as follows:
– Business Strategy
  – Business scope
  – Distinctive competencies
  – Business governance
– Organisation Infrastructure & Processes
  – Administrative structure
  – Processes
  – Skills
– IT Strategy
  – Technology scope
  – Systemic competencies
  – IT governance
– IT Infrastructure & Processes
  – Architecture
  – Processes
  – Skills

Some other key lists are:
– Planning involves consideration of the following aspects of IT:
  – strategic
  – tactical
  – operations

– tactical planning areas:
  – application
  – data
  – system
  – network
  – project
  – SLA
  – DR (business continuity)
  – security
  – audit
  – capacity
  – skills
  – budget
  – vendor
  – management systems

– the technology S-curve has implications for the strategic posture that a new technology can create for an organization

– characteristics of innovation that influence adoption rate
  – relative advantage
  – compatibility
  – complexity
  – trialability
  – observability

– to measure IT, identify strategic goals for each of the 38 IT Processes. Then identify a measurement related to a critical success factor of that goal

– Society for Information Management said best to use Portfolio Management Process (2001)

– also use the Business framework to rank investment projects using 4 criteria:
  – – financial benefits
  – – intangible benefits
  – – technical importance
  – – business objectives

And so to the final list, the book’s contents:
1. Introduction
2. IT Strategy
3. Strategic Alignment Maturity
4. The Role of the CIO
5. IT Processes
6. Planned-Related IT Processes
7. Managing Emerging Technologies
8. Organising IT
9. Human Resource Considerations
10. Management of Change
11. IT Governance
12. IT Business Communication
13. Measuring, Repoering & Controlling
14. Assessing the Value of IT

For me, this book highlights the need to get the IT strategy right and aligned to the business.

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Posted February 20, 2013 by terop in Books Read, ICT Strategy

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