Why IT Service Management Needs IT Financial Management
Piñatas are fun for all – except for the actual piñata. The idea is simple: use a stick and apply enough force in the right place and unlock all the treasures that lie inside. However, someone always pulls on a string to make it difficult to hit as blindfolded contestants take their best shot. Eventually, some lucky person deals the critical blow and triggers the scramble. The irony here is that the successful contestant has to scramble with everyone else to collect their earned fortune.
Competition for resources is real. Often times someone else is pulling the strings and blindly striking out at your department. If you’re an IT service manager or IT financial manager, you may sometimes feel like a piñata getting wacked with a stick. That’s because IT planning and budgeting processes seem like a game that starts out with all the right intentions, but lacks discipline and governance to achieve all the stated goals in the strategy. In fact, in the extreme case, resource allocation decisions may be made at the CXO level without ever consulting IT to see if their plans are feasible and affordable. If you are responsible for providing IT services and have the bruises to prove it, then you would most likely benefit from a robust IT financial management (ITFM) capability.
There are many tools and aids out there to help you build muscles in ITFM. Some are integrated with what you have now for service management and others are stand-alone products that may be better suited to work with the finance department. By deploying and employing one of these ITFM capabilities, you will be able to start showing IT value to business unit owners. Because of cost transparency, you will also be able show where demand is overstated and provide a defensible chargeback itemization for the details in your service catalog. Having this detailed inside information will promote productive conversations with all users of your IT services. This will enable you to become a strategic partner that helps direct where IT spend should go.
So cut the strings and pull off that blindfold. A robust IT financial management capability will allow you to protect your IT resource-piñata by making IT costs transparent. This will improve the planning and budgeting process, uncover declared and revealed demand for services, and increase the value you provide your internal clients. Remember…Value is what IT sells. Services are what business unit owners buy.