Information Technology Governance in Practice: A Project Management Office’s Use of Early Risk Assessment as a Relational Mechanism

Information Technology Governance in Practice: A Project Management Office’s Use of Early Risk Assessment as a Relational Mechanism

Hazel Taylor (University of Washington, USA), Jill Palzkill Woelfer (University of Washington, USA) and Edward Artman (City of Seattle, Washington, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/jitpm.2012070102
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Abstract

This paper compares implementation frameworks for Information Technology (IT) governance and functions of a Project Management Office (PMO). While there are commonalities, the relational mechanisms called for in IT governance frameworks are omitted from the PMO functions. The authors provide a case study of a PMO at a large municipal government organization where relational mechanisms are incorporated into the risk assessment process through the use of a risk profile spider chart. Drawing conclusions from collaborative practice research, the authors discuss the use and relational aspects of the risk profile spider chart and show how this tool enables boundary spanning between the PMO and other departments by functioning as a boundary object-in-use, increasing the likelihood of buy-in for IT governance decisions. The authors conclude that the tool has potential both as a risk assessment mechanism and a boundary object for building collaboration and thus may be useful for PMOs at other organizations.
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Literature Review: Connections Between It Governance And Pmos

IT governance is an organizational capacity exercised by the highest levels of management in order to formulate and implement IT strategy that is fully aligned with business objectives. The goal of effective IT governance is to leverage the organization’s IT infrastructure in order to ensure business value from IT investments and to mitigate risks from new IT initiatives (Bowen et al., 2007; De Haes & Van Grembergen, 2005). The formulation and implementation of IT strategy within the IT governance context requires both organizational leadership and appropriate organizational structures and processes (De Haes & Van Grembergen, 2005; Peterson, 2004).

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