As companies grow, their IT inevitably needs to change and develop. In reality, few companies follow a well-planned path so the result is often a complicated mixture of different “generations” of infrastructure, business systems and digital activities. The situation is normally further complicated by additional informal ways of working, for example, spreadsheets, work-arounds, and critical manual tasks by key individuals.
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Companies planning growth need to have a plan for how their IT can support and drive this growth. An IT Roadmap allows them to scale-up confidently, whilst maintaining or improving their margins and customer service. It ensures the Board have up to date information regardless of the increasing size of the operation. It allows the team to scale-up, confidently delegating authority to managers who can make judgements using up to the minute data dashboards. And it allows the Directors to move swiftly and to take opportunities for partnerships or acquisitions because their operation is a solid platform for growth. Furthermore, it optimises the value of the business in the event of an exit.
Many companies fail to have an IT Roadmap for Growth
An IT Roadmap is difficult to create which leads some companies into a cul-de-sac and we typically see businesses impacted in the following ways:
- Inefficient processes erode margins and make good service difficult or expensive. Errors and issues increase as the business grows which damages profitability and cash flow. Short-term problems dominate management and there is little time or money to plan for expansion.
- Poor reporting tools means that analysing costs, revenues, efficiency and profitability is difficult. Comparing trends and plans versus actuals should be easy. Which products and customers are profitable shouldn’t be a matter of opinion! Marketing and sales ideas run aground due to lack of data.
- Lack of standardisation means the business is reliant on individuals. People keep their own vital lists and system workarounds which makes them “choke points” limiting growth and expansion. When these key people are on holiday or sick then the whole business is affected – if they leave it’s a major problem!…….
Download the full CEO’s Briefing which explains:
- how the absence of an IT Roadmap affects businesses and their ability to grow and prosper
- how to turn business objectives into IT objectives to ensure that the IT Roadmap focusses on things that add value and make a real difference
- the best way to make a flexible and practical IT Roadmap for all aspects of IT, including people and processes as well as just technology
- how the Board needs to be involved, to lead the activity to ensure the IT Roadmap remains relevant and up to date.
If you’d like to discuss how Freeman Clarke could support your business contact us now for a no-strings conversation.