New governance process to guide IT planning

As part of ongoing efforts to improve and streamline operations, IT services reviewed how requests for technology initiatives are made, prioritized, approved and scheduled.

“With tight resources across the university, it is imperative that the most important work, as identified from a universitywide perspective, be done first,” said Cathy McVey, senior director of IT communications and relationship management.

Three new committees are now charged with identifying and evaluating opportunities: academic, administrative and Core IT planning committees. These groups meet regularly and bring requests for IT resources to the group, look for shared needs and seek to reduce and/or eliminate redundancy in existing services. They also monitor the prioritization and progress of requests and projects, with a goal of ensuring that IT resources are focused on the work that will provide the most value to the university.

Assisting these committees are three liaisons, responsible for understanding the needs and plans of their assigned constituency and navigating the process to make sure that enough scrutiny is applied to each request, without requiring excessive bureacracy.

IT Portfolio Board

Leading the decision-making for strategic initiatives is the IT Portfolio Board.  This group, comprising the vice presidents and the chairs of the planning committees, is responsible for overseeing the IT roadmap and the IT investment portfolio, monitoring alignment with Miami’s institutional goals and objectives.

Given the ubiquitous nature of information technology, any member of the university community may identify needs that could have a technology solution. To make it easy for anyone to submit an idea, a new online form is available that captures some basic information. One of the three liaisons will follow up on each idea or need submitted, routing it to the appropriate planning committee for discussion and potential approval.

“This process is new and is evolving as we work with it,” said McVey, “Our goal is for each member of the university community to feel empowered to submit ideas or requests and to place the decision-making with the committees who represent the area of the university most directly impacted.”

New reports and resources, providing updated information on current active work, as well as requests waiting to be started, will be available early this fall. Watch the e-Report for announcements and information. Questions about the process may be directed to Cathy McVey or any of the IT liaisons (David Woods, academic; Steve Thole, administrative; Bob Dein, Core IT.)