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Agile investments need a new kind of portfolio management that values optimization and contains monitoring and control. Otherwise, the wrong things get done, and a hidden cost of agility accumulates. 

Agile is a brilliant way of delivering software in the digital age, but its enterprise adoption has been unnecessarily wasteful.

Enterprises are craving for more speed to gain competitive advantage during digital transformation; but surprisingly, executives have limited options to respond with.

Digital transformation is all about speed, yet executives of traditional enterprises are increasingly saying that speed is their biggest challenge. New IT operating models can help, and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) make for the right time to deploy them.

As Forrester puts it, digital transformation is in a sorry state in 2018, but the inability to change culture, lack of digital skills, or ineffective leadership are not root-causes, but merely symptoms of an endemic, that is the conventional IT operating model is under-performing during digital transformation.

IT byproducts are everywhere, killing productivity and speed. CIOs should investigate how much they are effected.

Technological innovations have been the primary driver of digital transformation until now. To maintain the momentum, digital transformation needs a corresponding wave of innovations in technology management. IT effectiveness is the strive to achieve the best business outcomes from the available technology spending.

Most enterprises run their IT on industrial-era management practices; hence digital transformation performs like a car with a combustion engine - reliable and gets the job done but expensive and dirty. An upgrade to an electrical car is increasingly inevitable.

IT investments lag financial investments by decades when it comes to leveraging modern portfolio management techniques to maximize returns. First, consider the size of IT spending -- $3 trillion globally, $900 billion by financial services, $95 billion by the US federal government; and then, think about the size of the prize.

Agile portfolios still need demand management, because backlog management is not as efficient in balancing demand and capacity.

The traditional IT financial management frameworks are inadequate to run IT as a business, because they can’t answer how technology investments generate business value in a digital world.

In the absence of common performance metrics linked to business outcomes, “who should own IT?” is a debate about authority without accountability.

Considering the immense size of the technology spending – as high as a quarter of non-interest expenses – I’ve asked business and IT executives how they know if their technology spending is rightsized. Nobody seems to know for sure.

Behavioral economists have long discovered that the human beings are predictably irrational. Can their findings help us better understand, and manage, the system behavior of enterprise IT?

A modern-day IT strategy should strive to get an IT organization out of its efficiency and reliability comfort-zone, and elevate its business relevancy through continuous improvement in productivity, throughput and measurable business outcomes.

The monopoly of enterprise IT on corporate technology spending is diminishing, but not necessarily for the right reasons.

How can the traditional IT organizations remain business relevant while the business-IT divide remains, the shadow-IT spending increases, and the third-party providers increase their share of the enterprise IT spend?

IT and business executives must decide whether to transform the way their organizations interact. Maintaining the status quo may feel safe, but it’s risky.

During the time of transition from industrial-age to digital-age practices, what the business needs most is a renaissance of enterprise IT.

Contrary to aspirations of many, the digital revolution hasn’t turned out to be a gold rush; rather, it feels like a game of survival.

The future of the multi trillion-dollar enterprise IT industry will not evolve from the retrofit of half-century-old IT management practices with relics of the industrial-age.

The treatment of enterprise applications as capital assets is a relic of the industrial-age IT operating model. In the digital age, capitalization of the application development cost can be wasteful and counterproductive.

Cheaper inputs are no longer strategic for enterprise IT, but a system that propels productivity and throughput while supplying a steady stream of innovations is. The Trump presidency may become a catalyst for it.

The story of the manufacturing industry's transformation from mass production to lean production offers invaluable insights for business and IT leaders who hope to transform enterprise IT into a powerful competitive advantage in the digital age.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Business and IT executives need an objective performance yardstick with integrated controls to confidently grow agile program portfolios.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

The financial services organizations are heavily investing in agile as part of  Digital Transformation.​ However Agile development requires a different operating model and lacks a proven governance and performance management framework. The retrofit of traditional program and project management framework doesn’t work well with agile, leaving organizations exposed to unnecessary operational and financial risks.  Programs with over 100 developers are most vulnerable.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Enterprise-scale agile programs are lacking a proven management framework, similar to the program and project management theory that was behind the success of countless waterfall implementations for decades.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Return on technology investments will become more nebulous in the digital world due to the novelty of technology choices, accelerated pace of change, and required agility in solution design and development. Good news is that the emerging IT operating models produce a wealth of operational and financial information that wasn’t available before. By harnessing this information intelligently, it will be possible to get a better grip on technology investments.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

There is a steep transformation curve for the traditional Enterprise IT organization to become a competitive differentiator in the digital era. Among many, Service / Product orientation, DevOps and ability to master Waterfall and Agile simultaneously are key operating model characteristics of the digital Enterprise IT. By examining the information layer of their existing operating model, IT leaders can quickly identify how to best position their organization for success.

Monday, March 21, 2016

The Agile and Waterfall methodologies are two complimentary tools that every IT organization needs to master with. A wholesale adoption of one methodology over the other is inherently sub-optimal, and no methodology can compensate for deficiencies of the underlying IT operating model.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

The ability to exploit the speed of business change has become a key competitive advantage. The question is whether the traditional enterprise IT in the financial services industry is ready for the digital transformation; and if not, what needs to change.

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