The biggest concern for most IT managers is integrating IT with business processes. This is, of course, more of a business issue than a people one. It was voiced mainly by CIOs of large companies having Rs 500 crore plus turnover, and also by those with IT budgets in excess of Rs 10 crore. These are perhaps the people who've already been there and done that as far as product and technology implementation goes. Now they possibly need to re-look at their investments in IT and integrate it more strongly with their business processes.
Integrating IT with business processes
While integration may sound simple, it really isn't. Nearly 20 percent of those who gave this as their primary concern had no real solution. Of them, 27 percent thought it wise to involve users when integrating IT with business processes. Meeting business heads to map business processes and creating user awareness through training and feedback were a few ways being used. Fifteen percent of the CIOs said that they were deploying some business applications to solve the problem. Another 20 percent mentioned how they were doing it, with solutions such as phase-wise upgrading, ensuring zero impact on business continuity, BPR and mapping IT with workflow. Strangely, convincing top management to integrate IT with business processes didn't really come up as an issue. Does that mean that the top management is already convinced of the need to do so? Whether this is true or not, one thing is definitely true-CIOs face real difficulties when trying to convince the top management for new IT investments. This was the second biggest concern in challenge 1.
Convincing the top management
Majority of CIOs said that they tried explaining the benefits of a particular technology to the top management through live demos or by showing the cost benefit analysis, giving technical presentations, etc. Interestingly, very few of them specifically mentioned that they tried to look at the business benefits offered by a particular technology. Whoever did, used right data or differentiation between basic and strategic requirements to prove it.