Measure the Impossible in the IT Department


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IT measurements often focus on problems, such as amount of downtime or number of help desk requests, rather than contribution to corporate objectives, such as profit and customer satisfaction. Learn which measures to employ to better align the IT department's focus with the organization's goals. Translating IT effectiveness into business relevant terms helps include IT into the business value chain, which is highly regarded by senior executives.

Why Is Measuring IT So Difficult?

There are three major reasons why measuring IT is so difficult:

  • IT professionals don't have experience with financial metrics. Financial concepts and analysis are not common IT skills. This method of measurement is often not understood.
  • Many key IT deliverables are difficult to measure. Many metrics that IT would like to capture, such as availability, reliability, and systems quality, are not easily measurable. However, if there are observable benefits that can be identified, these benefits can be quantified and measured.
  • No standards in place. The lack of standards for what metrics to track and the failure to quantify qualitative measures, such as improved productivity, result in poorly created metrics or none at all.

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