IT governance is an important tool for the effective management of IT. IT governance currently concentrates on three dimensions - investment, change projects, and service delivery - but misses the critical element of system quality.
System quality is very broad. It covers fitness for purpose, viability, supportability, risks, compliance with regulations, and compliance to technical standards. System governance is a comprehensive framework for measuring and improving these system qualities. The benefits of this are:
- Improved shareholder value because IT systems are managed as business assets.
- Improved business IT relationship because IT infrastructure requirements are translated to measurable goals.
- Improved return on investment on IT infrastructure investments because management can track and enforce use of new infrastructure.
- Reduced project failures because technical and compliance issues are identified earlier.
- Reduced cost of compliance with regulations and internal standards because these are managed within an efficient framework.
- Reduced long-term risks and costs due to fragmentation of standards because management have visibility of the degree of compliance.
- Improved measurement of IT's performance in its role as stewards of business systems, which is particularly valuable for governing outsourced contracts.