What Is an IT Roadmap and Why Do I Need One?

According to CIO Wiki, an IT roadmap helps a company visualize how IT will evolve to support and digitally transform the business and its core products, and help reach an objective, value or milestone. Technology roadmaps outline the step-by-step strategy of major IT investments before any development and implementation work is started.

You may be wondering, what is an IT roadmap going to specifically do for my business? Having a strategic IT roadmap helps your company shift from responding reactively to proactively planning the technical capabilities your organization will need to fulfill your short- and long-term needs. IT roadmaps are essential to getting complex work done — such as addressing technical debt, infrastructure and growth-oriented innovation. 

3 Key Benefits to Having an IT Roadmap

There are several benefits to having an IT roadmap for your business, the most important being that it serves as a visual guide to the current and future success of your organization. An IT roadmap helps you track the progress of technological advancement as your company evolves. Here are three key benefits to having an IT roadmap:

1. Articulated Vision and Strategy

When creating an IT roadmap, you must first understand the “why” before determining the “what” and “when.” Making sure you understand and can clearly articulate the vision and strategy behind your short- and long-term plans for the technology of your business is critical to your success.

Have a set of IT objectives that can easily be tied to high-level business goals. Making these connections will allow you to identify the initiatives and the groups within your organization that will help you achieve these objectives. Some of the things to consider when creating an actionable roadmap and planning for the technology of your business include:

  • Budgeting and forecasting
  • IT project management
  • Business continuity planning
  • Software development and implementation
  • IT support and consulting services

Partnering with a technology consultant for assistance with articulating the vision and strategy of your business can help you move ahead faster with expert guidance and eliminate pitfalls along the way.

2. Real-time Updates

As work gets underway, using web-based roadmap software allows your roadmap to be updated in real time. Goals, initiatives and other details are entered only once and multiple roadmap views can quickly and efficiently be created as needed. This lets you focus on the work that matters, rather than spending time making constant adjustments to your overall strategy or plan.

Your roadmap should be up to date and connected to real work. That way, people can navigate to the details they need and locate the status of any work currently in progress.

3. Departmental Collaboration

By creating an IT roadmap, your department’s goals will align with the company’s vision and help you to create more value as a team or department. The exact timeline and details that you include on your roadmap will depend on your audience. For instance, executives often want crucial information about the business context and financial outcomes, while engineers may require more technical details. Ideally, you will build a roadmap that can be easily customized for your intended audience.

Consider which audiences will view your technology roadmap, so you can build it using language all involved will understand. If you plan to share the roadmap with more than one department, web-based roadmap software is once again the prime choice. It allows you to quickly and easily build several versions of the same roadmap and switch effortlessly among the different views during your presentations.

Still Wondering Why You Need an IT Roadmap?

What is an IT roadmap beyond a guide to your success? Well, depending on who you ask, it’s many things. It is meant to help provide you with the direction needed to navigate through muddy waters and help you achieve your overarching business goals. It is a guide that can be adjusted in real-time and as business conditions change, it provides a structure in which to manage those changes, not restrict them or hinder your success.

An IT roadmap will make it easier for your IT department to prioritize and plan projects that align with your company’s vision and help you work more effectively to accomplish your short- and long-term goals. There’s no harm in having an IT map to help guide the evolution of technology for your business, but there could be harm in not having one. Ultimately, the decision is yours to make.

When in Doubt, Schedule a Consultation

No matter what business you’re in, today you’re in the technology business. That’s good news, because technology can help you find new opportunities, optimize your operations and so much more. Partnering with the right tech consulting company allows you to harness the benefits without the headache.

Afidence’s team of expert consultants can guide you along a new path following the roadmap of success. We’re here to help your business transform. Contact us today or schedule a complimentary consultation to find out how we can help you stress less and achieve more for your business.

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