I was both privileged and pleased to have the opportunity to present a keynote address at the BrainStorm DC Conference in Washington DC last summer, where my presentation focused on the subject of relating enterprise strategy to business outcomes. By way of reintroducing the topic, I prepared a brief summary of that presentation for publication in the January 2009 edition of the Government Bulletin.
At every level of government, officials have been increasingly challenged in recent years to continue improving upon the delivery of government services, even as their expertise heads out the door – with the climbing rate of baby-boomer retirements –, while budgets are trending to the south. It is in times like these that government decision makers need to point their enterprise strategy, with a steady aim, at achieving better business outcomes, and greater mission success. This presentation focuses on the value of relating enterprise strategy to business outcomes by applying effective performance measures, portfolio management, and program/project management to the execution of business strategy – all of which will significantly improve the chances of implementing successful solutions in response to the basic business needs of government.
The presentation also maintains that the three primary areas of management focus – i.e., Performance Management, Portfolio Management, and Programs Management – need to be achieved as managers strive to ensure that these key facets of transformation success are not neglected along the way:
The presentation also addresses some of the questions that are most frequently asked by government leaders and managers about the implementation of effective enterprise business strategies:
a. How is portfolio management delivering better value in government decision making?
b. What are the key practices that distinguish different maturity levels of government organizations?
c. What are the key lessons learned to date from implementations in different government settings?
d. What criteria and categories should be used for assessing government IT investment proposals?
e. How can the value of IT be defined in a government context?
f. How can government IT programs be assessed to ascertain their real value, ensure that objectives are reviewed, and that resources are appropriately rebalanced from time to time?
The presentation concludes with an acknowledgement of several opportunities for further improvement, based on lessons learned, especially with respect to the utility of metrics applied, processes for dealing with government acquisitions, management’s ability to “blow the whistle” on underperforming programs and projects, and the need to improve decision support for enterprise governance mechanisms.
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