Competency and Value of IT: The Second Dimension of the SAMM

Posted: February 1, 2011 in Alignment model, Value Measurement
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The second of the six dimensions of the Strategic Alignment Maturity Model of Luftman (2000) is Competency and Value of IT. Too many IT organizations cannot demonstrate the value they deliver to the business. This dimension consists of 7 attributes.

The first three attributes all are related to Metrics. The first two are related to IT and to business, where the more formal metrics and surrounding processes (e.g. feedback-loops) are implemented, the more mature the alignment should be. The third attribute is about the level of integration of business and IT metrics.

The fourth attribute is about the availability of Service Level Agreements within the company. Not only the availability in itself is a measure for maturity, but also the orientation of the SLA. The more these SLA’s are written in business-terms, the more mature the relation will be.

The next three attributes are all related to mechanisms on learning and assessing investments. The level of using benchmarks, assessments and reviews, and continuous improvements all form a indication for the level of maturity of the alignment between business and IT.

In the questionnaire I’ve used, which was provided to me by Luftman, an eight attribute was mentioned. This was a question on the demonstrated contribution of IT in achieving the strategic goals within the company. I think this is an important question as well, because it illustrates the level of credibility of the IT organization within a company.

All these attributes are connected to the validation of the value and contribution of IT to the strategic goals. The more business and IT are working together in making this contribution explicit in dashboards or Business Balanced Scorecards, the more mature the alignment relation has to be.


Luftman, Jerry: Assessing Business-IT Alignment Maturity, Communications of AIS, Volume 4, Article 14, December 2000


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