With the ever increasing focus on innovation in IT, organisations are seeking to continuously find ways to improve and to get ahead. However, Innovation is not easily defined or measured. Whether core or a non-core to the business, IT must be innovative to join and lead the conversation on business innovation. Technology can be a significant enabler of business innovation, but IT must evidence innovation within, and join the innovation dialogue.
Innovation in IT can be best defined as the cumulative improvements achieved in key IT performance metrics over a period of time, weighted favourably if such improvements outstrips comparable peer performance, thus contributing to increased competitive advantage. Put another way, improvements over time, which do not fare well in comparison to peers, are not seen as contributing positively to innovation.
Measuring objectively and tracking progress are both crucial to the innovation process. Metrics are important levers for driving behaviour, in addition to evaluating results from specific initiatives. With a foundational understanding of where you are now, how you compare with peers, and where you want to be, you can better cultivate and manage innovation.
ImprovIT have a four step methodology for assessing Innovation in IT – to measure, compare and advise, focusing on the most relevant, suitable and repeatable IT performance metrics. The engagement commissioned typically seek to address the following questions:
- What are the best measures to evidence innovation in the IT services delivered and consumed?
- Are these metrics useful tools to plan and drive further innovation?
- If there is indeed evidence of innovation in IT, how does it compare on a relative index to other similar scale IT operations?
- Given the state of innovation, what are the possible means to drive, track and manage this for improved Innovation in IT?
- What additional interventions could accelerate the innovation process?