Implementing IT4IT: 5 crucial mistakes companies make

Stephan Badal
7 min read
Pitfalls of deploying IT4IT
The IT4IT™ methodology is a comprehensive framework for modernising outdated IT setups into nimble assets ready to meet modern business demands. 
With big data analytics, DevOps and cloud usage fast becoming pillars of providing quality products and services, CIOs are under pressure to ensure their IT systems can keep pace. The race is on, but it’s a measured, well-managed strategy that will ultimately win. Unfortunately, that’s often overlooked in the push to transform.
At DXC, our on-the-ground deployment experience has given us valuable insight into the crucial stumbling blocks companies encounter when implementing IT4IT. Below, you’ll find a play by play of the most common pitfall scenarios, alongside strategies to deftly avoid them during your own IT4IT implementation. 

1. Overshooting your IT4IT project scope

Deploying IT4IT will ultimately transform your organisation’s IT setup into an agile, efficient and future-facing unit. Understandably, that goal can lead to enthusiastic IT visionaries attempting to run before they can walk. Swept up by the potential of IT4IT, they overestimate exactly what can be achieved, and how quickly. Soon, the implementation plan becomes overwhelming. It’s all-go from the get-go, pushing progress for the sake of progress without pausing for thought. 
Without achievable, realistic steps planned out, your organisation’s finance department may well shy away from mounting costs, pulling the plug on the whole plan. Even the IT department itself is likely to be overwhelmed by a sprawling, overreaching plan of action, scuppering its chances of implementing IT4IT in its own best interests. 
To avoid this, keep your deployment plans realistic and manageable. Take your IT4IT implementation one incremental step at a time, even if this means extending the process over several years. A steady, informed implementation will guarantee the end results you’re aiming for. By contrast, rushing into IT4IT will guarantee the final setup is riddled with holes. 
It’s equally important to outline clear priorities in your IT4IT implementation plan. Often, CIOs are motivated to change everything at once, because they’re no longer sure where the real gaps in their portfolio are. However, achieving full-scale digital transformation across all areas, all at the same time is impossible. Instead, a hierarchy needs to come into play, based on one fundamental question: where will implementing IT4IT add the most value? At DXC, we’ve found that in-depth analysis to answer that question is the best way to devise tailored IT4IT implementation strategies to suit each organisation’s needs. 

2. Underestimating the importance of internal communication - both generally and for IT4IT

As with any major internal change, communication is key when deploying IT4IT. Often, CIOs struggle to articulate just how valuable IT4IT will be for the organisation at large, empowering it to revolutionise its service delivery based on a cutting-edge IT foundation. 
However, clear communication during an IT4IT implementation isn’t just about explaining the benefits of the methodology itself. Clearly communicating each stage of the IT4IT deployment can also pose a challenge. Yet this is vital to ensure the business and finance brains can see the incremental value being added at each stage. If not, your IT4IT implementation funding might well be cut.
To steer clear of this pitfall, you’ll need a well-formed change management strategy. Our consultants’ approach is to craft tailored internal communications plans, which CIOs can proactively use to communicate both needs and achievements throughout their IT4IT implementation. This works to ensure company-wide clarity on not just the end-goal benefits of the IT4IT framework, but also IT4IT requirements for deployment and the value added during the implementation process itself. 


3. Getting stuck in silos 

A key part of IT4IT’s goal scenario is a future IT landscape where your organisation’s business, development and operations teams communicate effectively and naturally. No more unsynced leadership, management and objectives; instead, different teams will integrate and align objectives and timelines across projects and initiatives. Rather than causing each other constant headaches, they’ll mutually benefit each other to enhance IT service delivery. 
That will put a stop to any friction caused by developers pursuing the shiny new functionalities that the business side of things demands, while operations struggles to push funding for a less flashy, but even more important, area: the behind-the-scenes maintenance that keeps all the wheels turning. 
Logically, to reach that future scenario, the teams need to talk to each other. This means that facilitating cross-departmental communication is very much one of the IT4IT requirements for deployment, as well as one of its ultimate aims.

To spark this integrated communication from the get-go, DXC adopts an MVP Proof of Value approach. This strategy lets us break down silo divisions, enabling your various teams to form new, effective communication habits. Our Proof of Value mindset centres on establishing a bite-size, controllable MVP based on your actual situation, with actual teams involved. So, no demo data or systems; it’s far more tangible than that. 

This way, we can demonstrate each incremental value addition at every stage of your IT4IT implementation. Highlighting each stage’s impact is key, as each adds value in its own right, rather than simply morphing into a waterfall implementation that only shows its worth after several years. 

As it progresses, the MVP Proof of Value approach will steadily align your teams, acting as the bedrock of a future, fully-functional IT4IT flow. Simultaneously, we’ll craft a roadmap outlining how you can continuously communicate the developments in your IT4IT journey within your company. Establishing this type of strategic overview is a core priority at DXC, given it’s vital to maintaining the momentum behind your IT4IT implementation. With the right roadmap in place, implementing your cohesive, coherent IT4IT framework will only be a matter of time. 


4. Opting for the easy way out, rather than IT4IT implementation

Often, ambitious IT leaders are looking for “the fix”. That solution that will fix up those legacy solutions into agile systems that add value, rather than drain it. That rapid deployment of new functionalities that will plug gaps, even if temporarily. 
However, quick-fix solutions won’t add lasting value. In fact, they’re likely to create an even greater drain on your resources, once that shiny newness wears off. IT4IT implementation takes an entirely different approach. It’s about building a new management framework for your existing IT systems from the ground up. What’s more, there’s no “fix”, no end solution. Instead, you’ll build scope for continuous evolution, sustainable growth and flexible capacity for leveraging the latest technologies. 
The easy answer is rarely the right one, and that’s certainly the case here. Determination is undoubtedly one of the key IT4IT requirements for deployment. When snags come up, keep going. When your strategy needs a re-think, keep going. Think in terms of possibilities, not limitations, to design with the end goal in mind. With a wealth of on-the-ground deployment expertise, DXC’s IT4IT consultants are proud to offer this ongoing support as needed. 


5. Failing to recognise the value of maintenance in sustaining IT4IT

Transformational change and detail-driven management might seem like contrasting concepts, but the reality is that the first can’t last without the second. Nowadays, IT service portfolios are often primarily focussed on new features and “Change”, whilst maintenance and “Run” activities don’t get the attention they deserve. This can cause major problems, including the potential collapse of your IT4IT framework. 
Yet it can often be tricky to bring the finance department on board with setting aside significant maintenance and management budgets. Naturally, they want to know where the money goes. Of course, CIOs know full well that maintenance funding is what keeps the IT ecosystem running smoothly 98% of the time. In that respect, nothing to report is a good report. Yet external departments - the ones controlling the money flow - tend to hone in on those 2% of critical incidents or major disruptions as evidence that maintenance is simply a funding sinkhole. 
To steer well clear of this scenario, DXC prioritises - and sets up the framework for - effectively communicating the importance of ongoing IT management to our clients’ business departments. This channels sufficient time and money into maintenance, rather than simply pursuing new functionalities. That way, your IT4IT setup can operate at its best in the long term, with ongoing consultancy support from DXC as needed. 

Common pitfalls? Avoided. IT4IT implementation? Taken care of.

At DXC, we’ve cultivated the hands-on experience to intuitively guard against the crucial errors companies make when implementing IT4IT. With a permanent team of IT4IT consultants on hand, you can rest safe in the knowledge that your deployment will avoid these common pitfalls.
From setting the right program scope to strategising internal change management, from forging resilience to balancing your IT service portfolios between “Run” and “Change”, we’ll support a smooth, effective and steadily managed IT4IT implementation. 
If you’re ready to prime your IT setup for future success, why not start by making an appointment with one of our IT4IT consultants? They’ll take the time to understand your organisation’s needs and goals in depth, alongside outlining how DXC can facilitate an efficient, reliable and results-orientated IT4IT implementation within your organisation.
[1] IT4IT is a registered trademark of The Open Group

Do you want more information?

Do you have a question? Of maybe a remark? Please don't hessitate to use the contact form, send us an e-mail or just call us. We are there to help you!

Get in touch