IT projects 'need business involvement'

IT managers who don't want the sky to fall in when things go wrong should find a non-IT sponsor for their next project, according to new research
Written by Graeme Wearden, Contributor
The most common reason for a failed IT project is poor communication between the IT department and the rest of the business, according to a survey published on Monday. The research, carried out by IT consultancy group Unilog, found that many IT managers aren't ensuing the cooperation of other areas of their organisation in their key projects. This means that dangerous gaps can develop between what is wanted and what is being delivered, resulting in delays and overspend. IT managers invariably take the blame when this happens, but Unilog believes that senior staff across the organisation should also carry the can. "IT managers are getting frustrated, but so is the business when an IT project fails to deliver. IT is there to support the business, but it shouldn't be a one-way street," said Camille Libosvar, managing director of Unilog UK, in a statement. "Business managers must be involved from the outset and this teamwork must continue throughout the length of the project. We need to dispel the myth that IT projects are the sole concern of IT managers -- they are business initiatives and should involve all levels within an organisation," Libosvar added. One hundred IT managers were interviewed by Unilog, and all admitted having been in charge of at least one project that failed to meet all its objectives. Twenty-eight said that their most recent IT project failure had been caused primarily by a lack of professional ties between their department and the rest of their company. Poorly set expectations and inadequate project scoping were each blamed by 20 percent of the IT managers as the main cause of their most recent failed IT project. To avoid this fate, Unilog recommends that IT managers ensure that a senior manager from another section of their company acts as a sponsor for their next project.
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