Summary and Benefits
CITO Research offers a unique form of consulting for IT organizations, aimed at accelerating achievement of difficult goals in the following areas:
- IT Pruning consulting to identify systems that can be retired and reduce the technical debt of an IT organization while improving IT management processes. (For more about IT pruning see: Why Aren't You Pruning Your IT and CITO Research Mission: Creating a Playbook for IT Pruning)
To find out more about CITO Research IT consulting services please send an email to Dan Woods, CTO and Editor of CITO Research (dwoods@CITOResearch.com).
CITO Research consulting is based on the following assumptions:
- Most of the knowledge to solve challenging problems already exists inside an organization.
- Most challenging problems do not yield to a simple solution, but require approaches that balance difficult tradeoffs.
- Alignment to make rapid progress can only be achieved if everyone participates and feels they are heard.
The CITO Research consulting method:
- Accelerates knowledge capture inside the company in a Findings document created by researchers, writers, and editors.
- Delivers that knowledge to analysts with deep experience in the question at hand who create Recommendations document, and then
- Aligns the company around an Execution Plan by making sure everyone is heard and all objections are addressed and preserved as warnings to keep in mind during execution of the plan.
The result of a CITO Research consulting engagement is a living body of knowledge that grows as more is discovered.
How It Works
CITO Research Consulting projects are carried out by the following teams:
- Research Team: This team, comprised of CITO Research researchers, writers and editors, prepared based on input from the client and the analyst team, interviews staff and performs research to rapidly gather all information needed to chart a path forward.
- Analyst Team: This team, comprised of CITO Research Analysts and others as needed, frames the issues, generates questions, and, based on the results of the research, helps craft alternatives.
CITO Research consulting engagements take place in the following manner:
1) The goals the company is seeking to achieve are captured during an initial kickoff meeting.
- The kickoff meeting helps define the goals of the project in detail, the questions that must be answered to create a plan to reach those goals, including identification of all stakeholders in the organization.
2) The Research Team interviews internal staff and external experts to create a Findings document that captures all relevant information.
- Confidential interviews are carried out with internal staff who are encouraged to speak freely.
- Experts outside the company may also be interviewed with appropriate NDA’s in place to answer questions that require specialized knowledge
- Questions are usually added during the first round of interviews.
- The client and the analyst team review an initial draft of the Findings and approve any new questions.
- Outstanding questions are answered in a second round of research.
3) The Analyst Team reviews Findings with the Client in an onsite meeting.
- The Findings document allows analysts to come up to speed quickly.
- Any questions not addressed in the Findings document are added.
- The analyst team expresses initial thoughts about recommendations.
4) The Analyst Team presents Recommendations.
- Based on a second draft of the Findings document created by the research team, the Analyst team creates initial Recommendations document with the help of the Research Team.
- The client then comments on those recommendations, raising objections and pointing out strengths and weaknesses of each approach.
5) The Analyst Team presents final Recommendations and a suggested Execution Plan
- The final version of the Findings and the Recommendations is created by the Analyst with the help of the Research Team
- The final Findings and Recommendations are presented with an outline of an Execution Plan.
This method of consulting separates time-consuming research and writing tasks from analysis. As a result, senior consultants can engage in complex consulting engagements without having to spend huge amounts of time doing work they are not well suited for.
In addition, because everyone in the company is consulted and has their thoughts recorded, alignment can be achieved around a complex plan that involves tradeoffs over competing approaches. Objections and warnings are captured and kept in mind during execution.
Ideally, the Findings and Recommendations documents are published inside the company and become living documents in which staff record new ideas, results, tips, and tricks to support a process of continuous improvement. More content is added as more is learned.
To find out more about CITO Research IT consulting services, please email Dan Woods, CTO and Editor of CITO Research (dwoods@CITOResearch.com).