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(continued from p.


Managing IT Like a Managing the Managing the Managing IT for Business

Business IT Budget IT Capability Value
Enterprise Architecture
ITG IT Leadership & Governance FF Funding & Financing EAM TCO Total Cost of Ownership
Business Process Technical Infrastructure Benefits Assessment
BPM BGM Budget Management TIM BAR
Management Management & Realization
BP Business Planning PPP Portfolio Planning & Prioritization PAM People Asset Management PM Portfolio Management

BOP Budget Oversight & Performance Knowledge Asset

SP Strategic Planning KAM
Analysis Management
Demand & Supply Relationship Asset
Management Management
Capacity Forecasting Research, Development,
& Planning & Engineering

RM Risk Management SD Solutions Delivery

AA Accounting & Allocation SRP Service Provisioning

Organization Design
ODP UTM User Training Management
& Planning

SRC Sourcing UED User Experience Design

Program & Project

IM Innovation Management PPM
Service Analysis & Supplier Management
Capability Assessment
SICT Sustainable ICT CAM
& Management

Figure 1. The IT Capability Maturity Framework. The Innovation Value Institute has organized the IT-CMF
into four macro processes, with 33 critical processes. (Source: Innovation Value Institute; used with

Evaluating the Framework 8. provide baselines or bench- The mechanics of measuring the
As a profession, IT currently lacks marks for comparison; maturity of each of these four
a clear, universally applied, business- 9. be easily repeatable for point- broad categories involves evaluat-
ready, CIO/CFO-ready standard to-point comparisons to mea- ing 33 different aspects within IT
for defining, measuring, and per- sure the impact or progress of (see Figure 1). These subcatego-
forming continuous improvement changes to the IT or business ries probe more deeply into how
on IT. But what would a compre- environment (quarterly, year- IT is performing and provide a
hensive framework need to do to on-year, and so on); and comprehensive view not only of
accomplish that goal? In my opin- 10. have been used in the real IT but also of its value, linkage to
ion, such a framework should world with real results. business, and performance as a
1. leverage knowledge from ex- To best evaluate the fit of the IT- Similar to the CMMI and other
isting frameworks; CMF against these needs, let’s ex- capability models, the IT-CMF
2. provide a complete overview amine the framework and its parts. measures each of these 33 aspects
of IT; on a 1–5 scale (5 being optimal).
3. be flexible, because nearly ev- IT-CMF: A Closer Look under What’s different, however, is that
ery industry vertical leverages the Hood the model doesn’t presume that
IT differently; The IT-CMF divides the essential 5 is the best score for your in-
4. connect to non-IT corporate capabilities of the IT organization dustry. Overachieving in certain
measurement and perfor- into four categories: categories could, in fact, be a bad
mance efforts (such as the thing. Consider Figure 2, which
Balanced Scorecard); • managing the IT budget, shows IT-CMF results as they’re
5. speak to both IT and non- • managing the IT capability, presented to an organization. In
tech business leaders; • managing IT for business value, this example, an overinvestment
6. have value to IT; and in IT capability has been flagged
7. have value to the business; • managing IT like a business. as a potential risk.

computer.org/ITPro 61
CIO Corner

Managing IT Managing Managing IT

the Managing the for Business
like a Business IT Capability
IT budget Value

5 Risk of competitive Risk of competitive

disadvantage due to below disadvantage due to
below-average maturity? over-investment?

Industry average

The company’s
current maturity level


Figure 2. Sample IT-CMF results, as presented to a company. The framework can be applied across all IT
functions or to a selected set of areas. (Source: Innovation Value Institute; used with permission.)

Average Scores The fact that the IT-CMF goes and better responses, few organi-
In a press release from June 2010, further into the interconnection zations currently seem interested
the average score on the 1–5 scale with the business and whether IT in reviews on an annual basis.
was quite low at 2.1 (see http://ivi. runs as a business is key. The re- This is more of a limitation of the
nuim.ie/news/SS2010.shtml). The sult is that the IT-CMF appears to business environment than the
highest scores went to firms in the be uniquely positioned to become tool set. The IT-CMF appears ca-
tech sector at 2.5, while firms in a vehicle for better communica- pable of handling annual reviews
the pharmaceutical sector were tion, decision making, and bud- and, in fact, would properly lever-
among the lowest at 1.9. Financial geting of IT for the improvement age them if performed.
services came in at 2.2, utilities at and alignment of an enterprise. Finally, more case studies are
2.0, and all other sectors and or- certainly required of mid-tier-
ganization types came in at 2.1. As Room for Improvement sized organizations. This will help
you’d expect, when firms performed Referring back to my original establish better data for the base-
a self-assessment, the average score list of 10 items to consider when lines (as noted earlier) and help
was “average” at around 3.0. evaluating the value of a frame- serve a broader array of clients.
work, I believe the IT-CMF meets
How Does this Speak or exceeds the first seven points. The Future of IT-CMF
to the Business? The areas where improvement is As IVI moves into the second
There will probably never be a tool needed are the last three items. stage of its growth plan, its abil-
or framework driven by “the busi- First of all, baselines and bench- ity to integrate more members
ness” to assess IT that would focus marks (by industry vertical) aren’t in and perform a greater number of
beyond some form of regulatory place. However, as more members assessments is expanding rapidly.
evaluation (such as a financial audit join the IVI and more assessments IVI states that it currently has over
or an evaluation of compliance with are completed, the framework will 120 practitioners and researchers
the Sarbanes-Oxley Act). To date, certainly provide baseline data for from over 40 global member com-
most IT assessment tools have been industry-wide assessment. panies, which are divided into 14
focused on the technical aspects of Second, though I would think working groups.
IT, with a very few considering peo- annual assessments would be In the very early stages of the pro-
ple, organization, or culture. useful to provide timely feedback gram, IVI was offering assessments

62 IT Pro November/December 2010

to firms at a nominal cost, with go. Seasoned CIOs often sit back a balance that doesn’t favor any
the hope that these firms would and wait for new trends to move one force over the other, this
later join as IVI members. IVI beyond the hype stage and gain framework should be more ef-
doesn’t currently publish the traction through use. More im- fective than the evolution of
terms or requirements for par- portantly, they want to ensure the SEI-CMM model that came
ticipation of members, and it’s that any new “thing” has staying out of Carnegie Mellon in 1986.
reasonable to assume that the IVI power before investing energy, Much like SEI, the intellec-
will have to further evolve and ex- time, effort, or dollars. Yet as of tual property related to the IT-
pand its membership base before June 2010, nearly 300 CIOs and CMF is owned and licensed by
a standard “membership” cost senior IT executives had com- National University of Ireland
structure is set. pleted one of the certification Maynooth.
Not all members are “enter-
prises” who are consumers of the
framework. Several large-scale
consultancies have also joined the
IVI provides a balance of industry “might and
consortium, clearly participating expertise” offset by the more neutral academia
in the definition and ultimately
the deployment of this frame-
and research forces.
work. As a result, IVI is further
working on certifying profes-

sionals to achieve qualifications programs (http://ivi.nuim.ie/news/ he IT-CMF framework
as “professional diplomas” and SS2010.shtml). is going to evolve into a
“master” qualifications to ensure IVI, as a cross-academia and in- prominent and meaning-
there will be a substantial base of dustry-based consortium, provides ful tool for our industry. CIOs
professionals prepared to assess a powerful balance of industry (and nontechnical executives)
and assist in any improvement “might and expertise” offset by should thus become familiar with
programs. the more neutral and unbiased it and should consider when—not
Of course, CIOs are used to academia and research forces. whether—an assessment or mem-
seeing methodologies come and As long as the IVI maintains bership in the IVI consortium
would benefit their overall busi-
ness mission.
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computer.org/ITPro 63
CIO Corner

A New
© Stillfx | Dreamstime.com

Framework for IT
Tom Costello, UpStreme

or decades, IT executives The IT-CMF have been performed across 80
have struggled to find a The IT-CMF started with a leading Fortune 500 firms.1
mechanism for successfully framework proposed by Martin The success of the early models
managing IT and measur- Curley in Managing IT for Busi- and the feedback to further opti-
ing their teams’ progress while si- ness Value (Intel Press, 2004). IVI mize the tools certainly played into
multaneously addressing business then worked to refine and ex- the expansion and growth of the
concerns. To describe and manage tend the framework. However, IVI team and their mission, which
IT, they use frameworks, stan- this effort wasn’t just an ivory- is to “[research and develop] uni-
dards, and capability models, such tower think tank producing slick fying frameworks and road-maps
as the Zachman Framework, the presentations. for IT and Business executives to
Capability Maturity Model Inte- A consortium comprised of large create more value from IT and
gration (CMMI), the Information enterprises, technology experts, better deliver IT enabled innova-
Technology Infrastructure Library academia, and seasoned CIOs tion” (http://ivi.nuim.ie/about).
(ITIL), and Control Objectives for constructed the new IT-CMF to They’ve grown their membership
Information and related Technol- address a range of issues facing (large- and small-scale IT orga-
ogy (COBIT). Yet they also must CIOs and nontechnology execu- nizations), expanded the involve-
produce results. Every CIO has tives. Furthermore, they’ve been ment of academia in researching
lived through the pain of trying stress testing the framework with the model, and are working to
to manage their work such that it large enterprises, including Chev- incorporate the IT-CMF into key
clearly translates into success and ron, Northrup Grumman, BP, and MBA programs around the globe
productivity for the business. SAP. For the past several years, (including initiatives to create a
The Innovation Value Institute these firms and others have been specific graduate program on the
has introduced a new framework quietly executing the framework. IT-CMF itself).
that stresses the connection to The early case studies provided As evidence of IVI’s commit-
business value in a significant and a baseline with which the IVI team ment to the accuracy and longev-
measurable way—the IT Capabil- could review (and promote) the ity of the IT-CMF, its investments
ity Maturity Framework (http:// model to industry experts, con- in creating and expanding the
ivi.nuim.ie/ITCMF). The IT-CMF sultancies, and CIOs from all sec- framework total over US$10 mil-
measures potential across a de- tors. In February 2009, IVI went lion and 60,000 hours of human
fined set of capabilities for an IT public with the results of their ap- involvement.
environment but also aims to proach, and as of June of 2010, IVI
speak to the business. reports that over 150 assessments (continued on p. 61)

64 IT Pro November/December 2010 Published by the IEEE Computer Society 1520-9202/10/$26.00 © 2010 IEEE