Business Information Technology Planning In 2021
“Every moment spent in planning saves three or four in execution.” These are the words of Crawford Greenewalt, former president of DuPont Company.
Today, Information Technology is a critical component of any organization. And as you may be aware, IT is often synonymous with rapid changes, conflicting priorities, and funding needs. Therefore, it’s overly essential for businesses to develop a clear-cut plan to guide proper execution for improved returns on investment.
In this article, you’ll learn the importance of practicing business information technology planning in 2021 and beyond. But first, what is business information technology (BIT)?
Business Information Technology (BIT) Overview
BIT helps organizations across industries to automate systems and processes to reduce inefficiency, increase revenue, minimize wastes, and achieve objectives faster. It helps address three main areas; consumer demands, regulatory requirements, and commercial transactions, which have become more stringent and complex lately.
In essence, BIT aims to improve customer experience and fulfill the growing needs of organizations. It enables companies to keep updated and implement new procedural, software, hardware, or systems changes. What’s more, customer service improves through better employee engagement, there’s easier access to information, and optimal responsiveness, all thanks to business information technology.
BIT also leads to other benefits like risk minimization, efficient information transmission, better competitiveness, and more. But all these don’t emerge out of the blue; it takes thorough planning to leverage business information technology and benefit from it.
The Importance of Business Information Technology Planning
Focus on the Results
By drawing up a cutting-edge road map of how you want to leverage information technology to grow your business, you shall have created a sense of direction and focus. But you also want to make the plan responsive enough to enable you to flex or change your goals in case the market makes an unprecedented shift.
The trick is prioritizing business IT functions that are likely to deliver results the soonest, say 3-6 months. So as much as you want to focus on the results, it only makes sense to break down the plan into smaller units, given the dynamic nature of today’s market environment. Don’t get it wrong, though; the long-term goals are still very alive, only this time, you’ve taken a wiser approach and broken them down into smaller, achievable plans for better validation.
Remote Workforce Integration
Shifting to a remote workforce to prevent Covid-19 spread was the new normal in 2020. Fast-forward to 2021, the work from home setup has been engraved in most companies, and it’s slowly turning into a permanent working culture.
But here’s the big question; how do you eliminate bottlenecks like system outages, downtime, and cyberthreat actions to ensure that remote employees enjoy all the privileges of an on-premise environment? You guessed it – through in-depth business information technology planning.
You must devise a well-defined plan to prevent or mitigate a data breach, which is a significant risk factor among the remote workforce, given that their devices may not be security-optimized. Planning how to fix potential system outages, downtime, or other related issues also guarantees continual business operations regardless of what your remote team faces.
Embrace Innovation and Agility
As we mentioned above, consumer needs and demands keep growing while technology also advances by the day. The best way to keep up with this dynamism is through adequate planning. And this entails finding the perfect balance between agility and business innovation strategy.
BIT planning helps businesses become more agile by breaking down big goals into short-term initiatives that are easy to enact and achieve. As businesses implement these short-term goals, they’re also to track progress, adapt to successful strategies, and correct the mistakes going forward.
Given the business environment’s risky nature, continuity is usually dependent on whether you have a strategic technology plan. That is, do you have a clear-cut plan on how to prevent or recover from a potential threat? Planning business continuity entails leveraging technology to:
- Conduct impact analysis, i.e., determining how various business risks can disrupt operations over time
- Devising procedures and techniques to remediate the risks
- Implementing steps of recovering essential business functions if a risk occurs
- Testing the techniques and the steps to confirm that they’re effective
- Reviewing the processes every often to ensure they’re up-to-date
Business continuity planning is a critical step for any organization because threats and disruptions come unannounced, often leading to revenue loss, increased costs, and a drop in returns. True, insurance coverages are meant to reinstate your business to the original financial position before the risk occurred. But guess what? Insurance doesn’t cover all the costs, let alone compensate for all the customers who jump ship to your competitors.
Better Business Decisions
You can easily shift from making speculative decisions to more result-proven ones if you have a solid business information technology plan. How so? With a clear road map to follow, businesses can execute projects and formulate ideas that align with the ultimate business goals.
Picture this: You have a critical event, or you’re busy keeping up with work on the weekend, then boom! A system outage occurs. Without a solid tech plan, you’d probably be forced to close for the day and miss the opportunity until normalcy resumes. But nothing can ruin your day if you have a BIT plan in place, e.g., having an expert a phone call away or contracting the best managed IT services provider to take care of such issues.
After planning an IT strategy and ascertaining that the plan will support business growth, what’s next? You want to break down the long-term goals into shorter ones that are achievable within a specified timeframe and budget. You also want to follow up with your plans and make necessary adjustments because external forces like market shifts, emerging trends, or funding can always alter the implementation.
Also, don’t shy off from consulting experts to help with your business information technology planning. You need an experienced IT provider’s input to help you create goal-specific plans that align with your business objectives.
Have you completed your 2021 technology plan yet? If not, don’t worry; we’re here to help. Reach out to our team of technology professionals, and schedule a no-obligation virtual meeting to discover more about the importance of having a strategic technology plan.