IT Coaching, IT Consultancy, IT Leadership, IT Management, IT Operation, IT Assessment, IT Leadership

A CEO’s guide to Digital Transformation by Mckinsey

By | IT Strategy | No Comments

The seven decisions that matter in a digital transformation: A CEO’s guide to reinvention

By Peter Dahlström, Driek Desmet, and Marc Singer (Mckinsey)

Often the case, when it comes to the digital transformation, it was left solely for the CIO/CDO/Head of IT to think, strategize and implement them.

However, in many successful stories of digital transformation, it was the CEO who is propelling the overall program, supporting the decisions made on the capacities, capabilities and investment made on the overall digital transformation ecosystem.

Article on Mckinsey shared A CEO’s guide to reinvention: 7 decisions that matter in a digital transformation.

http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/digital-mckinsey/our-insights/the-seven-decisions-that-matter-in-a-digital-transformation

 

9 Steps to consider when transforming service mindset in an IT service operations

By | IT Operations, IT Service Management, IT Services | No Comments

Many times, operationally we achieved “green” Service Level, but in reality, did we delivered service within customer expectation? Have you ever wonder, could this be wrong defined SLA?  Or do we focus too much on SLA and we forgot the most crucial factor that is, customer’s perception and users’ experiences?

Excellence service is the integral part that will reflect your business culture and retention of customers. Hence, the ability to provide consistent high service levels can be challenging. But how can we maintain the ever continuous demands and able to overcome situations and challenges?

In this white paper, we will provide you with 9 steps for you to consider when transforming service mindset in your IT service organization. http://www.qaaf.my/download/9-steps-to-transform-it-service-operations/

How to reduce IT Complexity

By | IT Operations, IT Strategy | No Comments

Excessive complexity in the IT Environment can drive up IT costs and reduce the IT organization’s flexibility, agility and overall ability to support the company’s objectives.

Reducing this complexity is difficult, however, as it typically builds gradually and stems from multiple causes.

There are four must haves in design and implementation of a successful IT simplification effort:

  1. Blueprint for the target end state and a roadmap for getting there;
  2. A program management office that helps to drive progress and track results;
  3. Simplification principles that are embedded into the company’s governance structures;
  4. Buy -in from senior management

In the article by Boston Consulting Group, there are 6 drivers and high-level approach that are served as basis for reducing IT complexity. The approach is shared as per diagram can be pursued simultaneously, sequentially or an isolation.

BCG Analysis - Reduce IT Complexity

You can read the full article here:  Simplify IT – 6 Ways to Reduce Complexity.

Malaysian CIO: Spend your IT budget wisely

By | General Insights, IT Operations | No Comments

Malaysian chief information officers (CIOs) are still spending their IT budgets in the wrong places.

Companies should be looking at hot and cold investments and spend less on cold technology like ERP where current tech is good enough, leaving more budget for hot investments like business intelligence and analytics.

Gartner’s recommendations are that Malaysian CIOs should consider cybersecurity as a priority now but also add artificial intelligence/cognitive computing investments as a priority for the future.

Read more from this article:

http://www.thestar.com.my/tech/tech-news/2017/02/16/gartner-says-spend-your-limited-it-budget-on-hot-investments/

What is preventive maintenance ?

By | IT Services | No Comments

Preventive Maintenance is a process of keeping equipment in its intended, operational condition via conducting frequent checks, repairs or rebuilds of business equipment in the long run than only fixing things when they break.

A maintenance program focused on preventing breakdowns and business equipment problems can save money on repairs and lost productivity. So a good maintenance program is not only a viable option, but a valuable one for staying profitable.

Use two basic guidelines to decide if preventive maintenance is effective for your business equipment:

First, do not use preventive maintenance if the business equipment has a constant and consistent failure rate even when maintained.

Secondly, do not use preventive maintenance if the cost of the maintenance becomes more than the cost of an immediate replacement; this includes downtime, loss of production and other intangible costs.

The use of preventive maintenance in the workplace is mainly to lower cost. When maintenance is not properly conducted or cut back, the failure of equipment or structures increases over time, because the material used in the equipment or structure ages. With a preventive maintenance strategy, you can extend the use and the time of use for the equipment or structure. There are considerations when maintenance becomes more costly than the maintenance itself.

Having preventive maintenance programs helps to reduce unplanned delays.

Preventive Maintenance provided by the IT Service Provide should offer the following:

1.Decreasing Repair Cost

Lowering the amount of repairs that a company must do by repair or replace worn equipment or structures before they become unstable and unsafe.
This is a balancing act: companies must conduct preventive maintenance at a lower cost than it would take to fix machines only when they break. The costs of both are easily measurable, which allows companies to judge if they are actually saving money.

2.Increasing Productivity

Increasing productivity, by measuring the amount of disruptive time by the affected person using the broken business equipment as opposed to have a constant work flow.

3.Expand Time of Equipment

Expanding the amount of time equipment, machinery or a structure is able to be used in a productive manner. Having preventive maintenance programs helps eliminate sudden slowdown or stops in production, which can cause unplanned delays.

4.Preventing of Loss of Revenue

Some companies e.g. trading, heavily relied on the server/network/PC uptime, even with 1 second downtime will resulting in revenue loss. Possibly, if the business equipment is operating in optimally, it will decrease the downtime of these critical business equipment.

5.Cost effective

Compare the long-term cost savings of a maintenance program to the cost of immediate replacement and downtime of machinery and possibly employees. Using preventive maintenance helps keep production schedules and order deadlines on track, thereby keeping penalties down and income flowing.

Raising IT’s Strategic Orientation

By | IT Management, IT Strategy | No Comments

Behind every successful CIO/ IT manager is an effective IT Business Model, Strategy and Road Map (and yes, probably 35,000 other factors).

Unfortunately most organisations have not ventured into developing a well-planned IT Business Model, Strategy Roadmap – the typical point of failure being that of not having the most appropriate vision, and/or not aligning IT to the business objectives. In fact, when they have a good IT Business Model, Strategy and Roadmap, they fail to implement and monitor the associated benefits. Hence the two (the most appropriate IT Business Model, as well as focused disciplined execution of the IT strategic plan) must go together. The success or failure of any IT organization is a reflection of:

a. How well efficient IT is being operated (operational impact)

b. How much is IT helping make the rest of the organization become more effective productive (tactical impact)

c. How IT helps transform the way businesses are done (strategic impact)

Studies have shown that the presence of an effective IT Business Model, Strategy & Road Map (we call it IT Strategic Orientation) would have easily brought the following business value to organizations:

• Increase operational efficiency by 35%
• Increase productivity by 57%
• Increase resources utilization by 20%
• Reduce operating cost by 10% – 25%
• Exceeding services standards & services levels
• Upwards increase in revenue generation

Unfortunately most IT divsions continue to “keep the lights up”, and develop & consume a so-called business plan that has operational impact only. Each organization is unique, when it comes to developing their IT Strategic Orientation – it is not a plug and play solution. It requires IT to enable the mainstream business objectives. While there is no one size fits all template, having the necessary skills to develop this “canvas” is crucial to enable the CIO/ IT Manager to likely steer & drive IT Operations successfully, enabling high impact circumstances.

IT Heads, IT Managers, IT Planners, IT Technopreneurs must be equipped with this single most essential skill – ability to develop an effective IT Strategic Orientation for the organization – and consistently learn how to:
 position IT to align with business goals, supporting the achievement of business objectives;
 develop the most appropriate IT business model and IT roadmap to support strategic objectives;
 develop business centric IT performance management & performance metrics;
 develop the supporting IT Service Management imperatives;
 consistenly drive not only operational impacts, but also tactical & strategic impacts;
 make IT important to the mainstream business.

IT Assessment & Benchmarking Workshop

By | IT Assessment, IT Service Management, ITIL Coaching | No Comments

 

ITIL Know where you are doingITIL Pick the right process

 

How do you know which ITIL processes relevant and required for your organization? Normally, you will read whole book and attend the ITIL foundation course, after which you still wonder – how shall I go about to understand them?

But let me tell you that you can always do it yourself. Why? Because nobody knows your environment like you do. All you need to do is to learn how to assess them.

I am going to organize one day workshop on Basic IT Assessment and Benchmarking where you can learn basic assessment and benchmarking steps. In this 1-day workshop,  we will ignite a continuous improvement behavior in you. This class is only limited to 20 passionate IT executives and I will personally deliver the training. Register you interest by contacting 013-6800120.

p/s I am not selling Manage Engine and this is not Manage Engine training. I am just using its illustration. :-)

 

Performance Management

By | Performance Measurement | No Comments

Qaaf is going to launch its new product and service in 2017. We name it XsesIT (www.xsesit.com) . It is going to be an affordable benchmarking services to cater for SME companies in assessing their IT investments.

While waiting for its debut, we do conduct many other IT and business centric assessment and workshops. One of them is called Performance Management. Have a sneak preview on the impact if there is lacking or inadequate in one of the areas of performance management value chain.

TRM - Performance Management

How ready are your company to adopt new practices in both business and IT

By | IT Strategy | No Comments

If you are in the midst of transforming business processes in you organization, ask yourself these essential eight (8)  key questions for your preparation. (Excerptions from the book : The New IT  by Jill Diche)

  1. Strategy – Can company leaders connect strategy with the work being done across business units? Strategy is an enterprisewide practice that executives participate in and support.
  2. Operational Planning - How formal is operational planning in IT? There are structured processess for linking corporate strategy, business unit planning and IT resources.
  3. Collaboration – Do people work together easily? Are departments encouraged to share talent and ideas? Corporate goals determine which departments and skills should come together to achieve results. Cross functional teams are rewarded uniquely for driving business value.
  4. Prioritization – Is there a clear process for prioritizing work efforts both with in business units and across the company? Governance informs delivery priorities and there is a steering committee in place.
  5. Organization Structure – Does the organizational structure reflect the company’s strategy priorities and focus areas? The organizational structure will change occasionally to accomodate evolving corporate goals.
  6. Support for new ideas – Are employees at all levels encouraged to make suggestions for improvement? Structures are in place to support both strategic and tactical innovations.
  7. Partnering – Does your company reach out to partners to enrich its products and services expand its reach? The company forms partnerships based on a combination of strategic direction and gaps in own capabilities.
  8. Openness to change – Does your company’s culture support changes when they’re necessary? Is change seen as positive force for moving things forward? Both employees and leaders are results oriented, and they are rewarded for being part of new outcomes.


Short Tips: 2 ways to reduce costs using IT

By | General Insights, IT Operations | No Comments

There are many ways to reduce costs, but I would like to share with you, 2 ways to reduce costs using IT and still keep your margins:

1. Invest: Cleverly invest into IT systems or technology that not heavily rely on the people to do mundane and routine work. Mundane and routine works tend to bore people and at certain time, you may face increase of staff turnover. This will significantly increase your company costs i.e. Additional time and money spent to onboard, train and coach new staff.

2. Automate: Relook at your current business process. Find manual and paper based processes that can be automated. Nowadays, there are a lot of free and cloud based systems that can help you to automate your business processes. This will increase efficiencies.

Comparison Corrective, Preventive and Predictive Maintenance

Comparisons between Corrective, Preventive and Predictive IT Maintenance

By | IT Operations, Predictive Analytics | No Comments

Keeping the lights up for the IT team is a never ending job. With the advent cloud and Internet of Things, support and maintenance tasks and costs are impacting the companies’ workforce and budget.

Attempts to reduce these costs have led to the development of several maintenance strategies and solutions along time. There are three types of common IT maintenance practices, offered by IT Managed Service Provider (MSP):

  1. Corrective Maintenance implies that the IT equipment and devices are repaired after a failure has occurred. As long as an equipment is under a warranty agreement, the equipment owner does not usually pay for the repair though he can experience an unexpected malfunction.
  2. Preventive Maintenance requires performing periodic inspections and other operations at a schedule predetermined by the service provider mostly on the basis of time in service.
  3. Predictive Maintenance, which heavily rely on machine learning system and statistical model, can schedule an intervention based on some sensory information representing the current condition of the IT equipment, devices and its subsystems and a probabiliy of failure. This approach should, on one hand, minimize the risk of unexpected failures, which may occur before the next periodic maintenance operation, and on the other hand, reduce the amount of unnecessary preventive maintenance activities.

As when the business grows, the IT infrastructure and applications implementation gets into complex integration. The failure touch points are beyond IT team to comprehend.  Hence, this is where the predictive analytics come in with the capability to understand reliability of equipment’s at any point in time, to identify and isolate potential failures before they occur; to predict and plan for scheduled maintenance and downtime and to reduce unnecessary time-based maintenance operations is required.

This is the new era of IT support and maintenance – there will be a tremendous reduction of manpower to perform predictive maintenance in the future, except if there is a requirement of physical intervention. An alarming state for human brain and who is to blame?

Qaaf Malaysia