The Methodology

By Lawrence Walsh  |  Posted 2008-09-29 Print this article Print

The results of the Baseline/BTM 500 study show that enterprises that fully integrate business and technology management are more agile, more competitive and potentially more profitable.

Baseline/BTM 500 Methodology

The BTM Institute created an index that highlights the connection between corporate financial performance and business-technology convergence. This research also shows that enterprises at lower levels of maturity consequently score lower for business-technology productivity, responsiveness and project success than those enterprises at higher levels. As the enterprise’s maturity improves, the increasing synchronicity of business strategy and technology delivery makes the organization more agile and adaptable.

To understand what these successful companies do differently in terms of their management behaviors, BTM Assessment tools, based on the BTM Framework, are used to evaluate those organizations against a set of essential management capabilities for effective business-technology convergence. These capabilities are grouped in four functional areas: Governance & Organization, Strategy & Planning, Strategic Investment Management and Strategic Enterprise Architecture. Each capability represents a specific management competency defined by four critical dimensions: Each is ordered by repeatable processes, executed through appropriate organizational structures, and enabled by the right information and technology.

BTM research shows that at Level 1, enterprises typically execute some strategic capabilities in a disaggregated, task-like manner. At Level 2, an organization exhibits limited capabilities, attempts to assemble information for major decisions, and consults the technology function on decisions with obvious business-technology implications. Enterprises at Level 3 are “functional” with respect to the capabilities, and those at Level 4 have the capabilities fully implemented. Organizations achieving Level 5 maturity are good enough to know when to change the rules to maintain strategic advantages over competitors.

Publicly available financial data is then compared to the unweighted average figures for the industry groups of the leaders for a direct head-to-head comparison. The comparison serves both to normalize the comparison and to reduce the number of factors that could otherwise account for performance differences. Depending on their technology investment and the role of technology in their type of business, different industries may experience different results.

Lawrence Walsh Lawrence Walsh is editor of Baseline magazine, overseeing print and online editorial content and the strategic direction of the publication. He is also a regular columnist for Ziff Davis Enterprise's Channel Insider. Mr. Walsh is well versed in IT technology and issues, and he is an expert in IT security technologies and policies, managed services, business intelligence software and IT reseller channels. An award-winning journalist, Mr. Walsh has served as editor of CMP Technology's VARBusiness and GovernmentVAR magazines, and TechTarget's Information Security magazine. He has written hundreds of articles, analyses and commentaries on the development of reseller businesses, the IT marketplace and managed services, as well as information security policy, strategy and technology. Prior to his magazine career, Mr. Walsh was a newspaper editor and reporter, having held editorial positions at the Boston Globe, MetroWest Daily News, Brockton Enterprise and Community Newspaper Company.

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