It’s show time in Atlanta on February 5th for the Atlanta Falcons and the New England Patriots. Each team made it to Super Bowl LI primarily because of great talent; however, that’s not all that got them there. Coaching staff had to analyze opponents, develop strategies, practice techniques, and implement game plans throughout the season and playoffs to succeed. That’s what ultimately got them to the Big Game.
Much like successful football teams, Nicus approaches IT financial and business management using strategic, detailed, and analytical techniques. Not surprisingly, it’s a topic we often discuss during conference presentations and interactions with clients and prospects. Sometimes, we receive feedback or hear statements such as:
- “I think an 80% solution will be just fine”
- “I don’t have the time or resources to strategically assess and improve my IT financial management”
We understand that managing technology operations and finances are difficult, and that improving is almost never easy. Yet, we still believe that taking a strategic, detailed, and analytical approach is something that can help organizations improve their IT financial and business management tremendously. From what we’ve seen, there is still plenty that can be done in almost every organization.
The 80% Solution
Is an 80% solution acceptable? Consider the following examples that help illustrate what 80% really means:
- Four hours and 48 minutes of unsafe drinking water each day
- 19 hours and 12 minutes of electricity to run data centers each day
- One out of every five cars on the road without brakes
- Company’s year-end financial results only has 9 months of correct data
- Personal checking account register missing 6 days of transactions
The point of these examples is to illustrate that, although it may be difficult, when it comes to evaluating ITFM/ITBM tools and strategies, you should be aiming for the right solution. There will always be limitations and resource constraints. There will always be facets of an implementation where it is acceptable that data and/or calculations are directionally correct. The point is, if you start out accepting an 80% solution overall, you will probably wind up with far less than that.
You should attempt to find the right people, process, and technology to cover all the goals and priorities of your organization. Of course, there will be compromises, challenges, and frustrations along the way. The Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots do not aim for “good enough” and neither should you from the beginning. You should always aim for what’s needed. You might be surprised at how many times that can be achieved when approached correctly.