PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP announced that it has established an Information Technology Business Risk Management practice to help organizations assess their exposure to IT business risks. The service will work with clients in managing these risks and assist the IT function in managing economic risk, organizational and process risk, performance risk, and crisis risk.

Information technology is a critical component of today's business infrastructure. However, many CEOs, executives and boards of directors are concerned about hidden risks that can arise when IT resources and operations are not aligned with the critical business objectives. Executives often view IT service delivery as ineffective in meeting business needs and are dissatisfied with the return on their IT investment in helping the organization manage business risks.

"Since there is no clear framework to assess the IT function against organizational objectives, senior executives often lack the necessary information to evaluate IT decisions, measure value and performance and instill accountability with their CIO," said Mark Lutchen, lead partner for PricewaterhouseCoopers' IT Business Risk Management Practice. "Executives need a practical way of ensuring that the organization has the right IT resources, appropriately deployed to support the organization's goals. If the IT function is not sufficiently resourced, or lacks the appropriate governance, or is not sufficiently planning for the future, the organization will be exposed to IT business risks. Simply put, the organization may not have the IT capabilities needed to support the current and future business goals."

"The most important trends with regard to IT investment going forward include a greater focus on optimizing existing IT systems as opposed to investing in new initiatives, the need for aligning the business and IT strategies and a holistic approach to business and IT problems," noted Anna Danilenko, IDC Consulting Services program manager. "There is renewed focus on ROI and financial validation concerning IT investments. This translates into the need for CIOs to become far more effective in managing their IT organizations in a more fiscally intense and business-like manner."

PricewaterhouseCoopers' IT Business Risk Management Practice's experienced staff evaluates the risk in the IT environment, interprets the results, and makes recommendations to management. The practices applies the new PwC IT Business Risk Management Lens methodology, drawing on key quantitative and qualitative information within an organization, to assess potential IT and business risks. The firm's proprietary Total Spend Analysis (TSA) Tool supports this rigorous analysis. TSA allows the organization to determine its total IT spend and compare it against the organization's business objectives and requirements and peers and best practices.

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