What is a technology roadmap?

Building Your Long-Term Technology Roadmap

What is a technology roadmap and why does your business need one? This is a strategic, living document outlining the technological direction of your business. A good technology roadmap helps communicate the “what” and the “why” of IT to decision makers, and also guides your IT department by providing the master list of IT projects that need to be completed. We recommend developing a technology roadmap with longevity in mind. A three-year plan is a great place to start.

Why Does Your Business Need a Technology Roadmap?

Your decision makers, or even your IT staff, might wonder why you need to go through the process of developing a technology roadmap. Every department at your organizations needs some direction, and a technology roadmap can provide that to IT. It gets everyone on the same page. It changes your IT department from being in reactive, fire-fighting mode to predictable, proactive action. Meetings will transition from deciding what to do to knocking out tasks and roadblocks.

A technology roadmap can be an attractive project to your executives because it budgets technology expenditures and sheds light on what sometimes is boring and unimportant areas of the practice.

How Do You Build a Technology Roadmap?

Dedicated IT builds a three-year technology roadmap for every client during the onboarding process and has honed the development process into seven steps.

  1. Conduct a technology assessment. To learn the landscape of your technology, document your assets, inventory, software, licensing, and who uses what types of technology.
  2. Complete a Security Risk Assessment. This process will result in a remediation plan, which provides you with categories of risk prioritization.  
  3. Assess vendor management. Meet with your vendors to learn exactly what they do for you and what their security and IT best practices are.
  4. Talk to your staff. You need to learn from the people who actually use the technology and experience issues daily.
  5. Make the technology roadmap document. Consolidate this information you’ve collected thus far and start organizing the items by priority and impact.
  6. Prioritize the technology issues you’ve discovered into low, medium, high, and critical items.
  7. Finalize your roadmap. Organize it by quarter, knocking out the critical items first. Write a narrative for each item on the roadmap. Determine which projects can be run internally vs. requiring a vendor. Provide an estimate of hours, and the suggested resource for projects that can be handled internally. Present the finalized roadmap to your decision makers.

Pitfalls for Building a Technology Roadmap

Building a technology roadmap is a valuable project that involves several parties. To get the most out of this process, it’s important to follow best practices and avoid pitfalls, including:

  1. The foundation of the technology roadmap is based on an IT assessment conducted by a company trying to unseat existing IT vendor or internal IT department.
  2. The technology roadmap is too technical or doesn’t align IT projects with business objectives.
  3. There is no calibration, alignment, or accountability to the team responsible for the technology roadmap
  4. Budget is not accounted for in the technology roadmap.
  5. Too many outside or second opinions are taken, rather than making data-driven decisions.
  6. There is a lack of long-term vision for how IT can support company goals.
  7. The IT leaders are not invited to business discussions.
  8. Your IT leader or partner lacks healthcare knowledge.

When you’re ready for a technology roadmap to inform IT strategy, Dedicated IT will be ready to help. As a Dedicated IT client, the first thing we will do is develop a thorough technology roadmap and conduct benchmarking. You will leverage our comprehensive approach to IT and our team of in-house IT professionals that are ready to improve your IT function.