Business owners and managers are always striving to better quantify returns from their IT investments. Most often they are not sure about the extent of business value they could be receiving from various IT projects. Here are four questions that can be asked to assist us with flushing out potential values of various initiatives under consideration:
Strategic Benefits – Will the proposed IT project help the organization become more competitive, such as helping with coming up with new products and services?
Operational Benefits – Will the proposed IT project improve current operational efficiencies such as reducing steps and improving quality?
Technological Enhancements – Will the proposed IT project improve our current IT capabilities such as making systems easier to use?
Risk & Compliance Implications - Will the proposed IT project better manage risks or improve compliance with regulatory requirements?
Using this simple model, business owners and managers can evaluate various IT initiatives under review and link each initiative to its potential business value proposition. Another benefit of this approach is that encourages decision makers to be looking at various IT initiatives as business improvement opportunities rather than pure technology projects.