CIO Alert: Five Cures for What Ails IT

Your IT department may be armed with bright and ambitious employees, but that doesn't mean the group will be efficient.

As with most departments, there are just as many causes for IT ineffectiveness as there are symptoms. And the IT group must be prepared to adjust to forces that are sometimes out of its control, whether it's changes in the business model that put more pressure on IT, poor vendor selection or having a CIO who has trouble understanding the letters ROI.

"With every failure it is easy to spot a multitude of potential causes," says John Baschab, senior VP of management services at , a tech staffing and services company with clients ranging from the mid-market to Fortune 500 companies.

The four main reasons for IT ineffectiveness, says Baschab, are: Business turmoil such as rapid revenue growth or a merger, which forces more demand on IT; poor selection and weak management of vendors; inexperienced and insular management style that alienates the IT team from the business; and poor financial and risk management (i.e. not understanding the link between IT costs and the benefits).

But there are cures for IT ineffectiveness, and Technisource's Baschab has five tips for CIOs and the non-technical executive who manage CIOs (usually the CFO or CEO) on how to align IT and the business in such a way that helps the company grow and succeed.