Information Technology: The Decision-Making Process
The decision-making process is crucial for every organization that is determined to implement changes in goals, objectives, policies, or to incorporate new techniques, approaches, or strategies within the work place, as the results or the outcomes will either make or break their success. For instance, the decision of whether to implement information technology systems is crucial to the success and the position of the organization within the corporate arena as the failure of the project will lead to the organization’s downfall. This is because information technology systems are costly using up majority of the resources of the organization, and time and effort is placed for training human capital in handling technological tools and gadgets. In simple terms, if the implementation of the IT project fails to acquire the goals and the objectives of the plan, the organization’s resources, time, and effort, all go to waste and let down the obtainment of return of investment but rather the opposite. (Frese & Sauter)
With the potential risks and threats presented by IT system failure, organizations should realize the importance of predict, forecast, or accurately determine the possible results or outcomes of IT plans or decisions that it is willing to make. Moving one step ahead of the IT planning and implementation process will ensure that organizations are able to prepare the working environment to face challenges, problems, or obstacles along the way, otherwise known as scope creep. (Gurlen) This process requires careful and thorough planning, accurate and realistic risk assessment processes, well-determined options and availability of resources, and effective training and knowledge management among the organization’s human capital. (Frese & Sauter) The remainder of this text will discuss possible options for organization to acquire and implement in order to evaluate and assess the desirability of IT planning decisions. In addition, recommendations regarding the IT planning and implementation process will be discussed in order to improve or develop organizational processes and operations in the integration of IT within the working environment.
The dimensions of the Information Technology Enterprise Architecture back-up the purpose of determining the desirability of IT plans and decisions. The outcomes of the enterprise architecture leads to recommendations for the organization to pursue in order to implement IT systems and tools or gadgets that will efficiently meet the needs, goals, and objectives of the organization. The Information Technology Enterprise Architecture follows a series of stages or phases that will eventually lead to the final decision-making process. First, the organization undergoes Project Identification and Selection. After this, the different projects or plans for IT system implementation will be subjected to the actual Enterprise Architecture wherein it will determine which projects or plans to pursue, as well as the requirements and resources needed to implement them. (Pries)
Aside from focusing on the dimensions and structure of the planning process as a means to foresee the possibilities of failure, the inclusion of organizational members and also the structuring of other aspects or processes within the organization helps in minimizing potential risks and threats prior to, during, and after the implementation process of IT systems. For the human capital or organizational members, the organization should be able to provide them with in depth and suitable knowledge and information to handle IT systems, directing their specific roles and responsibilities within the IT frame. The monitoring, supervision, evaluation processes are also crucial in determining the success or failure of IT systems. (Frese & Sauter) For the monitoring, supervision, and evaluation processes, members of the organization are actively involved to take on the responsibility of Enterprise Architects. Business leaders, specialty architects, and enterprise architects fulfill the responsibilities of planning, decision-making, implementing, monitoring, supervising, evaluating or assessing, and implementing changes in order to prevent IT system failure. (Pries)
Other organizational processes and operations that influence IT planning and decision-making are the efficiency and quality of communicative processes within the organization. Inefficient communication within the organization that leads to failure is similar to the concept of the “Tower of Babel.” Ineffective communication leads to misunderstanding and the break down of relationships that will consequently result to the failure. (Frese & Sauter) This means that in order to harbor the benefits and advantages of IT plans and decision-making processes, the members of the organization should be able to communicate effectively throughout the process by efficiently sharing or interpreting information.
In addition, the desirability of IT systems reaches out to its effects or outcomes in terms of satisfying end users or clients, for that matter. One of the ultimate goals and objectives of the organization is to provide quality services for its clients in order to obtain a wide and loyal client population. In this case, the relationship between IT planning and decision-making and costumer satisfaction lie in the need to consider the needs and demands of the organization’s clients. This may be conducted through surveys, questionnaires, or interviews to obtain vital information on how the IT system should be structured to satisfy the consumers.
Overall, determining the positive or negative results or outcomes of IT plans and decisions requires the implementation of various organizational processes that will eventually result to the design or structuring of the most efficient and feasible IT plan or system that will suit the needs and demands of the organization and the end users, as well as the realization of organizational goals and objectives. These requirements constitute the application of IT Enterprise Architecture, the involvement of organizational members or architects in the process of planning, decision-making, implementing, supervising or monitoring, evaluating or assessing, and incorporating changes to the system, the proper training of the human capital, the improvement of communication processes, and the consideration of customer needs and demands. By going through these processes and operations, the organization is assured of the implementation of effective and successful IT systems or plans within the working environment.
Frese, R. & Sauter, V. (2003). “Project Success and Failure: What is Success, What is
Failure, and How Can You Improve Your Odds for Success?” Retrieved from UMSL. 29 November 2008. <http://www.umsl.edu/~sauterv/analysis/6840_f03_papers/frese/>.
Gurlen, S. (2003). “Scope Creep.” Retrieved from UMSL. 29 November 2008.
Pries, D. (2002). “What is Enterprise Architecture?.” Retrieved from UMSL. 29 November 2008. <http://www.umsl.edu/~sauterv/analysis/488_f01_papers/Preis/paper_definitions.html>.