BlogIT Expense Management and Digital Business Alignment: The Holistic Approach

IT Expense Management and Digital Business Alignment: The Holistic Approach

December 20, 2015, Expense Management

When you hear the term IT Expense Management (ITEM) the first thing that may come to mind is this industry push toward “how to run IT like a business”, or the phrase “next generation TEM”, but what do these phrases mean? The best place to start is with a clear definition. ITEM is more than just an extension of traditional Telecom Expense Management (TEM). Gartner defines ITEM as being comprised of the following IT specific components: Expense Management, Financial Management, Service Management, and Asset Management. This best-in-class, lifecycle management approach, around usage and expenses, now focuses on speed of delivery and optimized IT investments. As your digital IT infrastructure continues to become virtualized across several Cloud service providers, you’ll need to make a conscious effort transition from away from the old “monolithic we own and control everything” cost center business methodology and into a facilitator that is the go-to broker agent for technology and on-demand information by working with your clients’ organizations to deliver a new business value position.

Integrating your IT operations in a holistic manner is the true path to savings and achieving breakthrough innovation in service delivery. Before you can start down this path, however, you need visibility into costs, usage, configuration and inter-dependencies of all IT services, assets and more. In addition, your organization will want to streamline processes, assets and efficiencies which makes the selection of your ITEM solution partner a critical play in determining the success of running the business of IT operations. Implementing ITEM enables two overall goals of control and savings, however, the planning, strategy, vendor and implementation will also determine your success.

The Holistic Approach

The evolution to “running the business of IT” is predicated on leveraging ITEM solutions to accommodate the growing demands of supporting a digital business. You’ll find numerous options including federating several disparate products and solution experts. However, in order to experience the full value of ITEM, organizations are finding that solution providers that have deep expertise and discipline stemming from telecom, are an important part of the selection criteria, as well as a natural starting point for the full IT Expense Management process. Your organization will need a solution provider with years of telecom experience and the full platform of integrated features and functionality, and don’t forget superior support and implementation, to meet your objectives.

The best-in-class IT Expense Management solution provider should enable your team through:

  • Flexibility to support site-specific business rules without customization
  • On-demand data export capabilities
  • Powerful analytics to assess organizational performance
  • Benchmarking results to operating plan
  • Intuitively interacting with data in a visual manner
  • Identifying trends and opportunities to optimize service delivery
  • Validating performance against SLAs and contracts
  • Assessing financial impact relative to rate plan changes

Implementing expense and asset management will align the IT department’s growth with that of the digital business opportunities through improved visibility, business intelligence, and communications. This shift toward measureable value will close the loop to running the business of IT, further supporting more informed forecasting and strategic initiatives. Timothy Cowell, SVP, Efficiency First Adoption, AOTMP states it best with, “Controlling the cost of the telecom environment illustrates good business sense; measuring the business value generated by the telecom environment illustrates strategic business vision.”


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