Sign In

Communications of the ACM

Contributed articles

To Govern IT, or Not to Govern IT?


To Govern IT, or Not to Govern IT? illustration

To govern, or not to govern information technology (IT) is no longer a choice for any organization. IT is a major instrument of business change in both private- and public-sector organizations. Without good governance, organizations face loss of opportunity and potential failure. Effective governance of IT promotes achievement of business objectives, while poor governance of IT obstructs and limits such achievement.

The need to govern IT follows from two strategic factors: business necessity and enterprise maturity. Business necessity follows from many actors in the market using technology to gain advantage. Consequently, being relevant and competitive requires organizations to deeply integrate their own IT agendas and strategic business plans to ensure appropriate positioning of technology opportunity and response to technology-enabled changes in the marketplace. Enterprise maturity follows from a narrow focus on operating infrastructure, architecture, and service management of an owned IT asset no longer being key to development of the organization. Achieving value involves more diverse arrangements for sourcing, ownership, and control in which the use of IT assets is not linked to direct administration of IT assets. Divestment activities (such as outsourcing and adoption of cloud solutions) increasingly create unintended barriers to flexibility, as mature organizations respond to new technology-enabled pressure. Paradoxically, contemporary sourcing options (such as cloud computing and software-as-a-service) can increase flexibility and responsiveness. Business necessity and enterprise maturity thus overlap and feed each other.


 

No entries found

Log in to Read the Full Article

Sign In

Sign in using your ACM Web Account username and password to access premium content if you are an ACM member, Communications subscriber or Digital Library subscriber.

Need Access?

Please select one of the options below for access to premium content and features.

Create a Web Account

If you are already an ACM member, Communications subscriber, or Digital Library subscriber, please set up a web account to access premium content on this site.

Join the ACM

Become a member to take full advantage of ACM's outstanding computing information resources, networking opportunities, and other benefits.
  

Subscribe to Communications of the ACM Magazine

Get full access to 50+ years of CACM content and receive the print version of the magazine monthly.

Purchase the Article

Non-members can purchase this article or a copy of the magazine in which it appears.
Sign In for Full Access
» Forgot Password? » Create an ACM Web Account
Read CACM in a free mobile app!
Access the latest issue, plus archived issues and more
ACM Logo
  • ACM CACM apps available for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, and Android platforms
  • ACM Digital Library apps available for iOS, Android, and Windows devices
  • Download an app and sign in to it with your ACM Web Account
Find the app for your mobile device
ACM DL Logo