This article describes how organizations can profit from an Audit of their current Digital workplace (DWP) solutions in a number of ways. It also introduces CTP’s approach to perform audits as a structured and standardized service.
Why should you perform an Audit?
The Audit of an existing DWP solution can be performed for a number of reasons:
Some time after the Introduction of a DWP solution, an Audit can verify, whether the actual platform usage adheres to the given policies & guidelines. At the same time, the existing rules can be reviewed for whether they are still aligned with the current IT and business strategy. Many organizations started their DWP in a “try-first” approach which usually comes with a very lean governance plan or sometimes with no official governance at all. With increasing platform acceptance (and therefore usage), the need for a more thorough governance approach is rising in order to keep control over the information and processes that are maintained in the system. The same applies for system operations, where sometimes individual subject matter experts are managing entire platforms next to their daily business because the official support organization has never been fully engaged.
Gaining benefits from best practices & looking for possible improvements
Even for organizations with a high DWP Maturity level, comparing the solution against best practices can further improve individual parts of the platform. The neutral and objective view of an external person can help to discover such opportunities, especially when the Auditor has an in-depth know-how of the clients industry, and maybe even from other industries using the same solution. That being said, Audits can be a very valuable input for the Continual Service Improvement phase of the service life-cycle according to ITIL.
Over the lifetime of a software solution, many new features are introduced for which it can be difficult to investigate for each one whether it can be applied and where to use it. Hiring a team with the relevant platform expertise, can help to further leverage the system’s capabilities and thus increasing the ROI.
Preparing for a regulatory audit
For regulated industries such as financial institutes or pharmaceutical companies, frequent Audits of their systems is a routine task. An Audit preparation against given regulatory requirements can help to avoid or at least minimize the number of gaps found during future Audits performed by the relevant authorities.
Introducing the CTP Audit service
Cambridge Technology Partners (CTP) has bundled its competencies in the areas of system assessment, regulatory requirements, technical expertise, business analysis and process optimization into an Audit service that can be offered to our clients. The service is built around a generic process that can be applied to all types of Audit engagements:
For each phase, a defined set of activities and deliverables is defined, which simplifies the planning and execution of an Audit and enables reliable cost estimations. By using a catalog of questionnaires, checklists and other tools, the high quality standards of CTP can be ensured while at the same time each Audit is tailored to the specific needs of the individual client. The service offers different possible Audit areas, called Audit dimensions, from which the client can chose from. Currently CTP offers the following Audit dimensions:
- Organization & Governance
- Information Governance
- Technical Setup (Microsoft SharePoint platforms)
- Audit preparation for regulated environments
- Cloud services
Depending on the actual Audit outcome, CTP can also assist the client with the creation of a road map to remove any gaps identified during the Audit or to plan the implementation of specific improvements, for example the introduction of a company wide taxonomy or the optimization of the operational support processes.
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