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The Strategic CIO by Philip Weinzimer

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11
How to MeaSure and
IMprove tHe MaturIty
of tHe StrategIc It
coMpetencIeS and SKIllS
of your It organIzatIon
To measure is to know. If you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it.
1
William ompson (Lord Kelvin)
e previous chapter focuses on two main themes. e rst is identi-
fying the competencies and skills the chief information ocer (CIO)
and information technology (IT) organization must have in order to
eectively collaborate in business teams to achieve business outcomes
that improve customer value, revenue, and shareholder wealth. e
second theme is how CIOs and their IT teams exhibited these com-
petencies and skills in working on business teams. If you recognize the
need to develop these competencies and skills in your IT organiza-
tion, you need a process to assess the maturity of these competencies
and skills. is chapter provides the process for you to do just that.
Following are the objective, key messages, examples, and templates
included in this chapter.
A. CHAPTER OBJECTIVE
1. Share a process for measuring the strategic IT compe-
tencies and associated skills using a strategic maturity
assessment.
240
the strategiC Cio
Valued
business
partner
Inefficient
Greatest opportunity to
create business outcomes
Improve business
knowledge and skills
15%–35%25%–50%
15
10
7.5
5
5%–15%15%–35%
Continuous improvement
Business knowledge
Market knowledge
Technology prowess
Cross dimension
Average maturity
Maturity
level
Cost
benefit
range
1
2
3
4 5%–15%
15%–35%
15%–35%
25%–50%
3
1
2
4
0
5 7.5 10 15
Applying skills for
business outcomes
Optimized
Low value
cost center
Skill
knowledge
drives additional
business outcomes
Improve application of
knowledge and skills
Strategic IT Organization Maturity Ranges
B. KEY POINTS
1. IT organizations need to exhibit four strategic compe-
tencies and associated skills if they want to eectively
partner with business teams to improve business out-
comes in the form of increased customer value, improved
margins, and enhanced shareholder wealth.
2. What is common among strategic IT organiza-
tions is a varying level of knowledge across the four
competencies—business, market, technology prowess,
and cross dimensional. Knowledge by itself is impor-
tant. What is more important is how this knowledge is
applied using a set of skills to eect business outcomes.
3. A strategic CIO recognizes that to succeed in achiev-
ing business outcomes through collaborating with
business leaders and teams is not a one-man process. It
takes IT personnel using their skills and applying these
skills in collaborative business and IT teams to identify
issues, challenges, and solutions that enable business
outcomes.
4. A strategic maturity assessment identies how well IT
personnel apply these skills and identies the gaps in
skill maturity that require improvement.
241
MEASURING COMPETENCIES AND SKILLS
5. You can measure the strategic maturity of your IT
organization by following a ve-step process:
a. Assess the level of knowledge and competency of
your IT organization.
b. Plot scores on a maturity index grid.
c. Assess results to determine gaps.
d. Develop a plan to improve scores.
e. Implement a continuous improvement program to
achieve positive momentum.
6. ere are variations on how to use the strategic IT matu-
rity assessment, from a quick gut check to a more detailed
assessment across the IT organization and business:
a. For items i through vii below: Figure 11.3 provides
descriptions of competencies, skills, and the associated
best-in-class practices. Table 11.1 is the Assessment
Instrument.
b. For item viii below: Figure 11.10 provides a template
for you to use to capture examples of how your IT
organization exhibits its skills.
i. Gut check assessment: e CIO completes the
assessment independently based upon his or her
observations of IT organization. is provides
the CIO with an initial point of reference base-
line to determine if further assessments, at a
more detailed level, are required.
ii. IT leadership assessment: e CIO completes the
assessment of IT leadership to determine their
degree of maturity. is provides the CIO with
a baseline data for identifying gaps and develop-
ing training programs with IT leadership.
iii. IT personnel assessment conducted by IT leaders
as a team: e IT leadership team performs an
assessment, as a team, of the IT organization.
is provides the IT leadership team with a per-
spective of the skill knowledge and application of
knowledge for the IT organization, as a whole.

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