Companies can ask these basic questions to determine whether IT capabilities are contributing to–or hindering–their growth.
- Is your total IT spending below or above the average for your industry?
(Clearly below, 1 point; average, 2 points; clearly above, 3 points)
- What share of your IT budget is spent on new capabilities?
(0-10%, 1 point; 11-35%, 3 points; above 35%, 4 points)
- Who decides the size of your IT budget?
(Your company’s business units, 1 point; business with IT input, 2 points; IT alone, 0 points)
- Is your company satisfied with its IT capabilities and services?
(Not at all, 0 points; yes, with prominent exceptions, 3 points; yes, 5 points)
- Is your IT organization familiar with–or consulted on–your business’s growth strategy and initiatives?
(Neither familiar nor consulted, 0 points; familiar, 3 points; familiar and consulted, 5 points)
- Do you consider your competitors’ IT superior to yours?
(Don’t know, 0 points; in just a few areas, 1 point; usually not, 4 points)
- Does a business team have a major role in each IT project, including infrastructure and software?
(Rarely, 0 points; just for key projects, 3 points; always, 6 points)
- Does your IT team quantify the return on investment of its projects?
(Rarely, 1 point; where possible, 3 points; always, 4 points)
Here’s how to evaluate your totals:
- A score of 4-14 means that fundamental IT performance and capability issues are inhibiting your company’s growth.
- A score of 15-20 means that IT is not powering growth and is performing poorly. However, it could do better with the confidence of and support from the business side of your company.
- A score of 21-30 indicates your IT organization is not powering growth, despite business leaders who are IT “believers.” It also shows IT needs business ownership for infrastructure projects.
- A score above 30 means the IT and business teams are successfully working together to achieve growth.
by David Shpilberg
Bain & Company
Subject: IT Questions