When most people think about innovation, they picture free-flowing creativity and environments that challenge the status quo. So it may sound counterintuitive to say that for innovation in the IT world, the best way forward is usually to start with the right policies and strategic framework.
Having the right policies in place for compliance with regulations, operating requirements, or even risk management, separates IT organizations that are able to nimbly innovate versus businesses that stay stagnant.
With a sound policy framework in place to manage the day-to-day business-critical components of IT, your organization is free to explore new practices and possibilities while improving productivity.
Here are 5 important policies you should put in place in order to boost innovation:
1. Change Management Policy
The quickest way to stifle innovation is to not have policies in place that enable change. An effective change management policy helps to push through successful service or product changes while also properly assessing risk and mapping out the impact on customers.
Without this policy, service disruption and other hurdles can stop innovation in its tracks.
2. Incident Response Policy
Not only does an incident response policy help you reduce the cost of a potential data breach but it also provides your team with a roadmap on how to effectively handle any type of downtime incident. This will help limit the time spent dealing with information security issues and allow your team to get back to focusing on innovative projects that push the company forward.
3. Application Use Policy
Without a clear organization-wide understanding of which cloud apps are available for business data, teams run the risk of creating an IT jungle of unauthorized apps running in the background. Monitoring that application usage helps to reduce the time employees spend in those programs as well, helping to harness their efforts into more productive and creative ways. IT organizations should have a cohesive enterprise architecture and policies in place that help govern approved apps. This ensures teams are all equipped with the same tools to implement change and future projects will be built on the same backend systems that everyone is working from.
4. Mobile Device and Remote Work Policy
All organizations are facing the reality that employees increasingly use mobile devices for getting work done, and are working remotely more than ever. A successful IT department will have policies in place to ensure security standards are met across any mobile or home office devices.
After all, innovation isn’t limited to a particular office environment or boardroom any longer, so these devices require a policy to manage them just as well, if not better than the servers and computers at headquarters.
5. Security Policy
IT teams are often tasked with training staff on how to identify and mitigate security threats and cybersecurity risks, as employees are often the ones to fall victim to digital attacks. These attacks can cripple businesses when a breach is large enough, and certainly put a halt to any plans of innovation when the breach is the most important thing to deal with.
Again, by having the right training in place coupled with guidelines on recovery, you can feel confident that your data is secure.
Each of these IT policies is critical for businesses embracing digital transformation and looking to spark innovation. Choosing the right mix of IT policies that make sense for your company’s IT infrastructure can be challenging. Oftentimes there are policies and processes where it makes sense to outsource to a managed service provider (MSP) in order to stay on the innovation track.
MSPs offer much more than just band-aid solutions when IT issues arise. Instead, they work with you to identify root causes and develop proactive responses to minimize issues before they become disruptions. Creating a sound IT policy foundation with an MSP can help accelerate the shift from simply operating to truly innovating.
Work with Quercus IT to build out an IT policy framework that allows your team to focus on innovation while we expertly manage your IT services.