The Advanced Practices Council (APC) of SIM is an exclusive group of senior IT executives from a variety of backgrounds, representing a broad range of industries. The APC commissions academic research on topics of interest to its members. Papers like these are usually released to general SIM membership six months after they are made available to APC members.
NEW! SaaS, IaaS and PaaS: Realities and Emerging Integration Issues
With rising economic pressures and frustration with existing information systems, Software as a
Service (SaaS) is gaining acceptance. It’s no longer only a point solution for a small business, but is
now being embraced in the largest organizations. CIOs considering SaaS adoption must weigh the
short term benefits it can provide, such as quicker and less expensive implementations, with concerns
related to having data and applications under a third-party vendor’s control (security, privacy, vendor
sustainability, etc.) Research shows that SaaS is being adopted by functional areas, regardless of the
IT department’s standards. Therefore, even if CIOs would prefer to keep all applications in house, it is
likely they will be faced with the challenge of integrating SaaS applications in the near term. There are
several integration options and, based on the historical trends, we recommend consideration be given
to both SaaS-delivered process-based integration tools and Platform as a Service providers.
How Do CIOs Measure and Communicate IT Performance?
The research discusses the important role metrics play in the IT value conversation with senior business leaders including focusing decisions, improving relationships and helping executives identify new sources of value from IT. Based on interviews with 23 CIOs and other IT leaders, the report identifies five practices that successful CIOs follow to gradually steer the IT/business conversation toward higher levels of strategic impact, including:
• Focusing on metrics that matter
• Discussing IT metrics in business terms
• Influencing others to take ownership of metrics and improvements
• Move to more value added segments of the portfolio
• Using metrics to complement relationships
The metrics in the report vary in scope from those that focus on internal IT operations and projects to
those that capture the contributions of IT to business performance and innovation.
NEW! Energy Informatics
In the APC's continuing tradition of being out in front, we present Rick Watson's and Marie-Claude Boudreau's report, Energy Informatics. Unlike every other article in the press on green IT, which generally involves managing power consumption of the data center and the IT function, Rick and Marie-Claude tackle the bigger opportunity of using IT to enable a much broader set of green business processes in supply chain, workforce management, collaboration and facilities. In this report, Rick and Marie-Claude introduce a comprehensive integrated framework that enables IS professionals to understand how they can apply their skills to tackling sustainable development and related issues such as global warming and carbon emissions. I believe their thinking is truly ground-breaking and they are at the forefront of a new field, which they have coined energy informatics.
Author(s): Richard T. Watson, Marie-Claude Boudreau
IT Governance and Control: Making Sense of Standards, Guidelines, and Frameworks
This research report includes insight from five case studies of organizations that implemented different process frameworks, including ITIL, COBIT, ISO 20000, and SCOR. The report concludes that process standards and frameworks do not cause inflexibility that inhibits an organization’s ability to respond quickly to customer needs. As a result of this report, the APC has developed an online cross-referencing tool that maps process frameworks, including COBIT, ISO 20000, and CMMI, to each other. This tool enables organizations to more effectively leverage the processes documented for one framework for inclusion in other frameworks, where appropriate.
Author(s): Sue Conger & Ulrike Schultze
Enterprise Mashups: What Do They Mean for CIOs?
Mashups, one of the fastest growing enterprise ecosystems on the Web, are likely to have an important impact on how businesses operate. CIOs can seize this opportunity to help their organizations identify ways to leverage this new technology. This report includes recommendations for achieving these value propositions.
Author(s): Ann Majchrzak & John T. Maloney
The Wiki in Your Company: Lessons for Collaborative Knowledge Management
This report describes best practices for gaining significant productivity improvements with wikis in such activities as software development, project management, ad-hoc collaboration, technical support, marketing and customer relationship management. Author(s): Ann Majchrzak & Christian Wagner
Deploying Far-Flung Teams: A Guidebook for Managers
This guidebook incorporates the learning from 54 successful far-flung teams. Several APC members have already changed their practices related to far-flung teams as a result of this ground-breaking research.
Author(s): Ann Majchrzak & Arvind Malhorta