Val IT

Val IT

Val IT is a suite of documents that provide a framework for the governance of IT investments, produced by the IT Governance Institute (ITGI). It is a formal statement of principles and processes for IT portfolio management.


Val IT allows business managers to get business value from IT investments, by providing a governance framework that consists of
* a set of guiding principles, and
* a number of processes conforming to those principles that are further defined as a set of key management practices.

The major processes are:
* Value Governance (VG prefix)
* Portfolio Management (PM prefix)
* Investment Management (IM prefix)

Currently (as of 2006) a relatively short body of work, it will evolve and expand over time, with documents available for download via the [ Val IT Page] at ISACA, and include:
* the framework itself;
* a template/guide to using Val IT when developing a business case;
* a case study; and

Relationship to COBIT

Val IT is tightly integrated with COBIT Version 4, also from the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (a.k.a. ISACA). The Framework document explains the difference between COBIT and Val IT as follows:

Val IT extends and complements COBIT, which provides a comprehensive control framework for IT governance. Specifically, Val IT focuses on the investment decision ("are we doing the right things?") and the realisation of benefits ("are we getting the benefits?"), while COBIT focuses on the execution ("are we doing them the right way, and are we getting them done well?")

Relationship to VMM

Value Measuring Methodology (VMM), which has the motto "it's not just about ROI any more", provides more specific guidance than Val IT about:
* the different types of value (tangible and intangible) that can be considered; and
* how to compare the "apples" (tangibles) with "oranges" (intangibles) from individual projects to help maintain balance.


* IT-enabled investments will be managed as a portfolio of investments.
* IT-enabled investments will include the full scope of activities that are required to achieve business value.
* IT-enabled investments will be managed through their full economic life cycle.
* Value delivery practices will recognise that there are different categories of investments that will be evaluated and managed differently.
* Value delivery practices will define and monitor key metrics and will respond quickly to any changes or deviations.
* Value delivery practices will engage all stakeholders and assign appropriate accountability for the delivery of capabilities and the realisation of business benefits.
* Value delivery practices will be continually monitored, evaluated and improved.

Major Processes

Each of the following major processes/activities have a RACI diagram, indicating the responsibilities of the senior executives, business managers, and information managers, along with the major and minor COBIT control objectives associated with the activity. It is these linkages and assignments of accountabilities that make Val IT a practical ready-reference that can be actioned, rather than it just being another list of "motherhood and apple pie" statements.

Value Governance

* VG1: Ensure informed and committed leadership
* VG2: Define and implement processes.
* VG3: Define roles and responsibilities.
* VG4: Ensure appropriate and accepted accountability.
* VG5: Define information requirements.
* VG6: Establish reporting requirements.
* VG7: Establish organisational structures.
* VG8: Establish strategic direction.
* VG9: Define investment categories.
* VG10: Determine a target portfolio mix.
* VG11: Define evaluation criteria by category.

Portfolio Management

* PM1: Maintain a human resource inventory.
* PM2: Identify resource requirements.
* PM3: Perform a gap analysis.
* PM4: Develop a resourcing plan.
* PM5: Monitor resource requirements and utilisation.
* PM6: Establish an investment threshold.
* PM7: Evaluate the initial programme concept business case.
* PM8: Evaluate and assign a relative score to the programme business case.
* PM9: Create an overall portfolio view.
* PM10: Make and communicate the investment decision.
* PM11: Stage-gate (and fund) selected programmes.
* PM12: Optimise portfolio performance.
* PM13: Re-prioritise the portfolio.
* PM14: Monitor and report on portfolio performance.

Investment Management

* IM1: Develop a high-level definition of investment opportunity.
* IM2: Develop an initial programme concept business case.
* IM3: Develop a clear understanding of candidate programmes.
* IM4: Perform alternatives analysis.
* IM5: Develop a programme plan.
* IM6: Develop a benefits realisation plan.
* IM7: Identify full life cycle costs and benefits.
* IM8: Develop a detailed programme business case.
* IM9: Assign clear accountability and ownership.
* IM10: Initiate, plan and launch the programme.
* IM11: Manage the programme.
* IM12: Manage/track benefits.
* IM13: Update the business case.
* IM14: Monitor and report on programme performance.
* IM15: Retire the programm

Use with other management domains

As with COBIT, Val IT can be adapted for use with many other domains that are yet to develop an engineering perspective, by either removing the phrases "Information Technology" and "IT-enabled", or replacing them with the name of your domain of interest (e.g. "Marketing"), and then "season to taste".


* [ The Val IT page at ISACA]

ee also

* Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) - Custodians of Val IT
* Value Measuring Methodology - assessment of value from "individual" inititiatives
* IT Governance
* IT Portfolio Management
* Risk management
* Earned value management
* Value Theory

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