IT Employees Don't Understand Their Place in Organizational Structure

By Greg Tavarez, TMCnet Editor  |  September 14, 2022

The current IT structure of many organizations is not lined up with businesses strategic objectives, resulting in IT employees being unclear about their roles and responsibilities. MIT Sloan reported in 2020 that more than two-thirds of digital executives indicated challenges related to structure, team silos, business-IT alignment and required roles when executing on a digital strategy.

IT design needs must support business objectives, not just IT needs. An organizational design identifies gaps in delivery, sourcing strategies, customers and degrees of centralization to be successful. Successful IT design will enable IT to fulfill an organization's strategic mission and vision of technical and digital initiatives and assist the business with clarity on who and where to direct concerns or questions.

Info-Tech published its newest research-backed blueprint, “Redesign Your IT Organizational Structure,” and revealed that understanding the drivers, context and strategies are key for successful IT organizational redesign.

The blueprint laid out four phases to redesigning an IT organizational structure. First, establish a set of organizational design principles that will guide the redesign process. Second, select and customize an operating model sketch that will accurately reflect the future state the organization is striving toward.

Third, translate the operating model sketch into a formal structure with defined functional teams, roles, reporting structure and responsibilities. And fourth, ensure the successful implementation of the new organizational structure by strategically communicating and involving stakeholders.

"An organizational structure is much more than a chart with titles and names," said Allison Straker, research director at Info-Tech Research Group. "It defines the way that the organization operates on a day-to-day basis to enable the successful delivery of the organization's information and technology objectives."

Following such a model will reduce the likelihood of turnover costs as IT employees understand their roles and importance, create a method to communicate how the organizational structure aligns with the strategic initiatives of IT and increase ability to innovate the organization.

The organization will also highlight and sufficiently staff IT capabilities that are critical to the organization, define a sourcing strategy for IT capabilities and increase employee morale and empowerment.

"Create a structure that is equally mindful of the opportunities and the constraints that might exist and ensure it will drive the organization towards its vision with a successful implementation," said Brittany Lutes, senior research analyst at Info-Tech Research Group.

Edited by Erik Linask