Technology today is playing an ever-greater role in the business world. New tech trends, such as AI and virtual reality, are quickly transforming the way companies do business.
To support this growth, great IT systems are essential. One measure of IT proficiency is known as IT maturity.
Here’s what your business needs to know about IT maturity and how to increase it.
Just what is IT maturity and why is it important?
In the simplest terms, IT maturity refers to how closely IT operations adhere to the accepted best practices of the information technology industry.
An enterprise that leverages technology to its highest advantage to increase profitability is, therefore, said to have a high degree of IT maturity, while one that pays little attention to IT processes is said to have low maturity.
IT maturity involves your enterprise’s entire IT support system, from processes to the actual software tools used by IT professionals.
IT maturity is important because it allows your business to make the most of its technology. This, in turn, can improve efficiency, resource management and profitability.
Keeping a high level of IT maturity is also important for integrating new technologies into your business. For example, utilizing the best practices in enterprise mobility technology can help your workforce be more productive with flexible remote working conditions.
How your enterprise can increase IT maturity
There are many ways for your enterprise to increase its level of IT maturity.
The right professionals
One of the most effective ways to raise your IT maturity is to have the right professionals implementing your IT processes. Seeing that your IT staff is adequately trained and certified will ensure that the raw skills needed to implement technology in the most effective possible ways are readily at hand.
For enterprises that need extensive IT help but lack the expertise to build an in-house technical staff, a managed IT service can be a good solution.
Focus on continuous improvement
Another key element of achieving and maintaining a high level of IT maturity is to focus on continuous improvement. In continuous improvement processes, existing systems are monitored and evaluated regularly to identify and address inefficiencies.
By implementing continuous improvement as part of your enterprise’s IT philosophy, you can ensure that the technology driving your business gets more efficient as time goes on.
The value of executive leadership
Executive leadership is just as important in IT as it is in any other area of business. One of the best ways to improve the leadership of your tech department is to transition to using a virtual CIO, or vCIO.
vCIOs are executive professionals who provide outside expertise and leadership for all of your enterprise’s tech-related operations. vCIOs can often be more focused and possess more experience than an in-house equivalent, allowing you to increase your IT maturity more quickly.
Invest in all areas of IT
Lastly, your enterprise should be investing in all areas of IT, not just those directly related to sales. Security, in particular, is an area in which companies tend to invest too little.
Cybercrime, much of it preventable, has been responsible for massive losses in recent years. In 2016, the BBC reported that nearly 6,000 online businesses had had their payment systems hacked with a single piece of malicious code. That same year, the central bank of Bangladesh was easily hacked because it employed a $10 home network router.
Incidents such as these prove that IT maturity is critical in all areas, not just the sales-related ones. Luckily, 82 percent of CIOs now say that security is a key area of IT focus.