The CEO of your organization has asked to you to conduct a technology audit to help him understand and manage his information technology tools and processes as a strategic business resource.
“Our existing IT systems have not always met expectations,” he explains. “Unfortunately, some of these suboptimal systems could still be in use because we haven’t fully explored suitable alternatives.”
“Our technology team and tech company vendors have briefed me on several new technologies and their capabilities, but I’m worried they don’t fit into an overall strategy for our organization. If we invest in these technologies and don’t recoup the costs, it could be a disaster.”
“I want you to become familiar with the current mission, objectives, and operations of the organization. Then I want you to perform an inventory of the current IT infrastructure, development, user-support, and system security, and assess how much they support the business strategy. Finally, research some of the latest technologies and how we could potentially use them.”
“I’d like you to a prepare and give me three things: a summary of our organization’s business objectives and our effectiveness in meeting them, an assessment of our existing technology, and a technology audit with your specific recommendations for changes to our organization’s technology infrastructure. You’ll have three weeks to complete this task. I’ll e-mail you some additional information later today.”
You return to your office and begin research into your organization’s mission and objectives. A few hours later you receive an e-mail from the CEO.
“I went to a conference last month,” the CEO has written, “and heard about some interesting ways to analyze large amounts of data.”
“Apparently, big data analytics,” he continues,”“is one of the fastest growing emerging technologies for business, and it has applications in finance, human resources, supply chain management, and engineering. Maybe we should be thinking about this? Or maybe there is other new tech we should learn more about? I’ll leave it to you to pursue what you think would work for us.” As you read his e-mail, you wonder what other emerging technologies you will learn about after a little more research.
You also begin to ponder the word audit: it implies a complete and careful examination. For this technology audit, you know you’ll need to examine all of the important factors that impact your organization’s current legacy systems and future technical capabilities, including hardware, software, networks, databases, security and people. You have a lot of work to do in the next three weeks!
This project will use templates in Microsoft Excel to walk you through steps to evaluate your information systems strategy, to assess gaps in your current system implementation and security, and to recommend emerging technologies to assist your organization in its business objectives. The file Templates_for_Project2_with_Instructions.xlsx contains the required templates and instructions in Appendices A1, A2, B, C, D, E, F, G ,H, I:
· Appendices A1, A2: Business Objectives (to be used with Step 1)
· Appendix B: Organizational Effectiveness (to be used with Step 1)
· Appendix C: Department Effectiveness (to be used with Step 1)
· Appendix D: Technology Inventory (to be used with Step 2)
· Appendix E: Information Technology Assessment (to be used with Step 2)
· Appendix F: Risk Assessment (to be used with Step 3)
· Appendix G: Risk Matrix (to be used with Step 3) (for information only)
· Appendix H: Emerging Technology Assessment (to be used with Step 4)
· Appendix I: Implementation Plan for Emerging Technology (to be used with Step 6)
Each appendix is in a different tab. A link to the Templates_for_Project2_with_Instructions.xlsx file is found in Step 1: “Understand the Business.”
When you submit your project, your work will be evaluated using the competencies listed below. You can use the list below to self-check your work before submission.
· 1.1: Organize document or presentation clearly in a manner that promotes understanding and meets the requirements of the assignment.
· 2.1: Identify and clearly explain the issue, question, or problem under critical consideration.
· 2.5: Develop well-reasoned ideas, conclusions or decisions, checking them against relevant criteria and benchmarks.
· 8.1: Evaluate major business/organizational systems and processes and make recommendations for improvement.
· 8.2: Analyze an organization’s current technology capabilities and needs, identifying specific strengths and areas of weakness.
· 11.1: Recommend strategic plan for the use of technology to meet the strategic goals of organization.
· 13.1: Identify and analyze new opportunities.