Technology Governance in a Simple Model

I talked about a governance model that has evolved over the past 5 years in our organization in many previous posts. I realize now that I have not actually explained the model, so here we go!

When we received approval to proceed with a strategic initiative to leverage technology to support teaching, learning, research and the business of BCIT, our VP Chris Golding came up with a simple governance model to guide technology adoption.

The model has 3 axes – Funding, Support and Impact.  The scale for the axes range from centralized to decentralized.  Let me give you some definitions before we look at the model. I am sure there are many other scales we could describe for this model but there is an elegance in these 3 simple descriptors.

Funding – describes where the funding is coming from on a continum of centralized (we are a centralized IT organization) to decentralized.

Support– describes where the support comes from on a continuum of centralized to decentralized (where in the Institute do the people who support the technology work).

Control – describes where impact or risk is managed from on a continuum of centralized to decentralized (where in the Institute does the responsibility and accountability reside).

Now that we have the axes described, it’s time to think about how they combine to form governance categories. In our original model, we described four categories for technology governance:

Enterprise – centrally funded, centrally supported and centrally controlled

Departmental – departmentally funded, departmentally supported and departmentally controlled

Innovative – project funded, departmentally supported and departmentally controlled

Opportunistic – externally funded, departmentally supported and departmentally controlled

Here is the model:

Strategic Governance Model - Jan 2009 

Over the past 2 years as the Manager, Business Application Services group, most of my time has been spent in the ‘pure” Enterprise space with projects in our ERP, portal, learning management and email systems.  My team also participated in projects in the intersection of the Enterprise and Departmental space.  We work with other areas of  BCIT in shared service model.  This is where integrating ITSM (particularly ITIL for us) with our EA practice.  Developing  Service Catalogues, Service Standards and Service Level Agreements are key to successfully deliver shared services. With emphasis on collaboration across the Institute, we need to define the  intersection space with a name … 

Shared – departmentally or enterprise funded, shared support and shared control

The updated model now looks like this:

Technology Governance Model - Jan 2009

I hope you find some value with our model.  Please let me know your thoughts and any suggestions for improvement.