It is an unfortunate fact that many companies do not seat IT directors on their boards, even though a deep understanding of IT issues at board-level is vital for the overall forward strategy of any organisation.
Deloitte agrees, which is why it is sponsoring the IT Director of the Year Award in the BCS IT Professional Awards 2006.
The award, which the Institute of Directors also associates itself with, seeks to recognise outstanding achievement in a senior IT management role and looks for:
● Excellent people management skills
● Commitment to training and development
● Planning ability
● Financial acumen
● Contribution to strategy and general management of the business.
The award is not just about spotlighting an exemplary practitioner, but also focuses attention on IT representation at board-level.
Senior IT managers should help propel IT onto the boardroom agenda by:
● Getting the fires under control and focusing resources on more strategic areas of the business
● Solving the mystery of measuring IT value in all key areas and not just focusing on greater productivity
● Communicating results and achievements
● Learning the language of the boardroom to ensure those at the top are aware of IT achievements throughout the organisation.
Chris Loughran, head of the technology practice at Deloitte, said: "Good IT directors need to combine an ability to interpret and evangelise about technology with an ability to execute and deliver.
"Delivering value is no easy task. It requires deep insight into the potential for IT to enhance business performance, and the ability to execute with ruthless efficiency."
For organisations with a high dependence on IT, it is vital to understand how it can both enable and constrain the business. Bringing the right IT director into the boardroom is a good way of aligning business strategy and technology.
"The award celebrates and rewards individuals who are pioneering IT professionalism within their organisation and setting an example for the rest of us," said Loughran.
The 2006 finalists in the Deloitte IT Director of the Year Award are:
David Brown of Scottish Water
Simon Kosminsky of SJ Berwin
David Matthewman of Norwich and Peterborough Building Society
Al-Noor Ramji of BT Group/BT Exact (also known as One IT).
The winner of the IT Director of the Year Award in 2005 was Lee Hendricks of Anite Public Sector.
For information on BCS membership visit: www.bcs.org/membership