Sep 072012

Good IT governance promotes balance across time-to-delivery, portfolio effectiveness, overall IT responsiveness and affordability. Without good governance, the IT playing field quickly becomes fragmented and fraught with frustration for all players — IT professionals on one side and countless business professionals on the other. And while it’s true that both sides have a role in the process, it’s unlikely that any of the stakeholders fully understands the others’ focus.

In this table, I’ve charted a way for both the demand- and supply-sides to understand governance processes and tools.


Demand Side Governance Process Supply Side
User requirements and expectations Service-level definition and monitoring, funding mechanisms IT service delivery performance
Applications required and used by organization Strategic planning, application portfolio, roadmaps Application delivery and support, including break-fix and minor enhancements
Technical infrastructure required and used by the organization SLAs, technology roadmaps Infrastructure delivery and support, individual infrastructure components
Projects in development and planned for the organization IT steering, project prioritization processes Project development and deliver


Using these tools to promote clarity, limit confusion, and build trust is easier said than done. IT governance is hard stuff because it involves people. It requires patience, compromise, openness, commitment, and leadership. At Cutter, we’ve developed a multi-phased approach to implementing the many dimensions of IT governance. You can download a chart of those governance elements, along with the topics that are included with each element here. If you have questions on your approach, I’m happy to answer them!


  One Response to “Finding Peace via IT Governance”

  1. IT governance is growing in importance in a number of sectors. You laid out some great ideas for common approaches to build trust between IT and the business.

    To take it one step further, consider the efforts of some of the largest banks in the US to improve application portfolio governance so that they can modernize their businesses amid thousands of existing and legacy applications.

    The CTO Council recently released a white paper,, which lays these ideas out in greater detail.

    This is only a start, but we’d be interested to hear your thoughts on it.

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