Understanding the Value of an IT Assessment

people walking toward servers

When people are honest with themselves, they admit that despite the need, no one loves a health checkup. Whether it’s a routine visit to the doctor or a regular cleaning at the dentist, people tend to neglect what is best for their health in favor of a break-fix mentality. 

The evaluation of the health of an IT environment is often faced with the same regard. Just as people are encouraged to undergo routine checkups to detect potential health-related concerns they may be unaware of, so too should analysis of IT environments be conducted in order to mitigate future risk. One way is by conducting a technology assessment – a complete view of your business and technology needs. 

Understanding IT Assessments 

Ultimately, the goal of an IT assessment is to optimize and create efficient IT systems in order to decrease costs, reduce risk, and improve governance and security. In the simplest sense, it provides verification on what is and what isn’t working. 

A productive IT assessment should provide insight into important questions, such as: 

  • How effectively does your use of technology support your overall business strategy and organizational objectives? 
  • To what degree does your current IT environment align with technology best practices? 
  • How strong is your organization’s security posture? 
  • What is your plan for technology in the case of a natural or unexpected disaster? 
  • How does your organization’s IT spend measure against the spend of others in your industry? 
  • What steps should your organization take to make improvements to your IT environment? 

Reasons to Undertake an IT Assessment 

The constant change intrinsically associated with technology forces even the most tech-savvy, cutting-edge organizations to consistently evaluate advancements in the context of their current IT environment and larger organizational goals. 

Furthermore, deficiencies often exist despite best efforts to mitigate risk. An effective assessment should define what is working well and what is simply not working with insight as to why. 

For instance, if an assessment reveals that an organization has two accounting applications, the assessor should question why there are two applications instead of simply providing an inventory. Based on the findings, a recommendation can then be provided on how to move forward. 

In addition to providing a health check of the organization, IT assessments can help organizations uncover whether or not IT is helping move the organization forward and if IT is appropriately spending, as well as provide insight into the innovation or lack thereof within the IT department. 

What to Expect Following an IT Assessment 

Before undergoing an IT assessment, it is important to recognize that, upon the conclusion of an assessment, action will need to be taken. As a result, the Resultant team has found that performing an assessment during or immediately prior to budgeting season enables organizations to effectively plan for the year. 

Although the actions needed following an assessment vary from one organization to another, areas for improvement Resultant commonly finds during the course of an assessment include failure to plan for disaster recovery, back-up failures, security deficiencies, misconfigurations due to staffing or experience issues, and hardware failures unreported due to minimal monitoring. 

How to Ensure You Select the Right Provider 

Before undergoing an IT assessment, make sure you find and select the provider that is right for you. Consider asking the assessor the following questions: 

  • What is your IT assessment process? 
  • What methods will you use to evaluate my IT environment? 
  • What will the final deliverable look like following the assessment? 
  • What moves the assessment beyond an IT inventory? 

Resultant IT Assessments 

Over the years, the Resultant business technology team has conducted IT assessments for organizations ranging from small and mid-sized businesses to enterprise-level organizations across a variety of industries. This experience has allowed Resultant to build a comprehensive IT assessment methodology. 

Resultant employs objective and quantitative tools (e.g. standards SOP’s, vulnerability scans, etc.) as well as conducts quantitative analysis (e.g. discussions with key personnel to understand technology pain points as well as organizational goals). In combination, this information enables the team to make meaningful suggestions. The end result is a roadmap to IT success that prioritizes actionable recommendations based on need, cost, and impact to the organization. 

Interested in learning more? 

Organizations that undergo an IT assessment have the opportunity to review their environment to ensure IT is moving the business forward. If you are interested in learning more, contact our Technology Services team or download more information about the Resultant IT assessment to get started.