Information Technology Planning & Budgeting

Information technology (IT) planning is the process through which information technologies are selected to support business strategies and initiatives. The implementation of these strategies is then planned, budgeted and scheduled. The planning approach is based on IT being critical to business operations.

In the absence of a well-defined technology plan, an enterprise faces the risk that individual IT decisions will be taken without due regard for an overall strategy and direction, and without consistency and synergy among individual components. This may result in adverse cost implications, performance implications, and loss of opportunities and, in extreme cases, inaccurate or unpredictable information-processing results.

The existence of an IT plan does not, in itself, prevent such risks, but it is an important and effective component in managing risks and keeping all areas of an enterprise focused on a common and synergistic direction.

Information technology represents an increasing investment in dollar costs, human resources, education and training, and in the commitment and involvement of end-users. Information technology is also becoming more of a source of competitive advantage and a means of achieving an overall lower operational cost, if it is appropriately designed, implemented, supported, and well used. Regardless of the size of an enterprise, a key senior management concern is ensuring that: the appropriate investment is being made in information technology; it is being invested in the correct areas; and the optimal value is being derived. A consistently structured planning process is key to assure that effective and efficient plans are produced, involving the right participants at the right time.

Appropriate structures, policies, procedures and responsibilities need to be developed to ensure that sound plans are produced. A key element is the development of a culture that values planning. The IT plan should be prepared with references to the strategic business plan to guarantee that information technology supports and facilitates the enterprise’s business objectives.

It is critical that the information technology objectives are communicated to, and understood by, those employees in the business that makes the decisions for acquisitions, development and operations of information technology resources. The most appropriate communications method depends on the enterprise size, structure and management culture.

To confirm the continued relevance of plans, they should not be regarded as definitive, but should be continuously modified and re-assessed, as appropriate.

Key benefits for strategically planning and aligning the use of IT within the organization include the following:

As we preserve the confidentiality of our clients, a client list and references is available by request.

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