IT management teams have no shortage of best practice frameworks. These frameworks often include philosophies, principles and tangible paths along which to move forward. This helps organisations to improve cost and resource management, effectively measure risk, improve the efficiency of their customer service and innovate analyses using predictive methods.

As technology advances every day, organisations are reaching new highs in terms of growth. From government sector IT cells to private-sector software enterprises, new technology is making advanced goals very realistic and attainable.

To make it easier for managers to manage all their resources and achieve maximum profitability, ISACA (Information Systems Audit and Control Association) has introduced a new platform called COBIT.

What is COBIT?

COBIT stands for Control Objectives for Information and related Technology. ISACA created COBIT to enable better IT governance and management. It is a powerful supportive tool for managers, designed to bridge the gaps that existed between technical problems, business risks and control requirements.

COBIT is a widely recognised guideline and has diverse applications in organisations across all industries around the world. The most essential function of COBIT is to ensure quality, control and reliability of the information systems within an organisation, both private and government-owned.

The COBIT Framework

Not too long ago, marketing and IT were two very different departments within the same organisation. As technology got more advanced, their goals started becoming more similar. The COBIT framework was designed to connect the business goals of an organisation with IT operations. This is done by providing key information metrics and maturity models that allow integration of the responsibilities of IT and business aspects within the organisation. These metrics also help check progress.

There are two main parameters involved in the COBIT framework that help with its scope and operations. These parameters are:

  1. Control Objective: This is concerned with creating procedures, policies and organisational structures. They help organisations to assure stakeholders that all business process objectives will be met and that IT and enterprise risks will be managed.
  2. IT Control Objective: This is a statement that takes into consideration the acceptable IT results and goals that must be achieved after implementing the processes created within the control objective.

COBIT is the preferred platform for many organisations because it defines IT governance as a complete structural entity by itself instead of being a part of IT. This allows the inclusion of the entire organisation and helps maintain security and attain business goals.

Additional Read: 7 Things You Must Know About Cyber Security in the Cloud

Components of COBIT

Framework

This helps in organising IT governance objectives and putting in place the best practices in IT processes and domains. All of this is done while linking business requirements.

Process Descriptions

This is a reference model that acts as the common language between every individual within the organisation. Process descriptions include the planning, building, running and monitoring of all IT processes.

Control Objectives

This gives a complete list of requirements that the management has considered for effective IT and business control.

Maturity Models

Maturity models are used to access the maturity and potential of every process. They also address any gaps that exist.

Management Guidelines

These guidelines enable better assigning of responsibilities, performance measurement, agreeing on common goals and better relationships with other processes.

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Principles of the COBIT Framework

There are five main principles of the COBIT framework. They are instrumental in creating an environment that is focused on effective IT management and governance. These principles are:

1. Meeting Stakeholder Needs

Fulfilling the needs of all stakeholders while maintaining optimal data security is a priority for all organisations. COBIT helps organisations to create strategies for this goal, by taking into consideration the three factors in this process. Organisations need to optimise resource management while also reap the benefits of these resources. But there are risks associated with both of these factors. COBIT creates a balance between each of these three factors. This is done by managing all stakeholder needs through proper governance and better decision-making and negotiation to deliver value.

2. Holistic Approach to Governance

IT governance does not just concern the IT department. It needs to encompass the entire organisation. To meet this goal, COBIT works with IT, auditing and management to create and implement effective, enterprise-wide governance with the help of certain ‘enablers’.These enablers have applications within all departments of an organisation. They can be divided into:

  1. Principles and policies
  2. Structures within the company
  3. Information and data
  4. Company processes
  5. Employee skills and competencies

3. Covering the Entire Project

When it comes to governance, COBIT focuses on covering projects as a whole. It integrates IT governance and enterprise governance onto one platform by combining IT services and processes with business processes. Under this principle, COBIT has four main objectives, which are

  • Creating value using governance
  • Using enablers effectively
  • Assigning roles and responsibilities
  • Deciding the scope of each project.

4. Single Integrated Framework

COBIT is an integrated framework that tackles all technology changes, manages risks and governs information for organisations. It can also be customised according to the needs of different organisations and can maintain regulatory standards for them.

5. Differentiating between Governance and Management

Governance and management have different objectives and responsibilities.COBIT understands the need for separate management structures for them and therefore separates them using different frameworks.

For governance, the EDM (Evaluate, Direct, Monitor) method is used. For management, the PBRM (Plan, Build, Run, Monitor) method is used.

COBIT 5.0 and its Benefits

As challenges get more advanced and technology continues to evolve, IT management and governance have reached a whole new level. COBIT 5.0 is one of the latest versions of COBIT and helps enterprises of all sizes to maintain stability and focus on their growth.

If you are looking to enhance your skills as a COBIT professional, there are several advantages of a COBIT 5.0 certification. This integrated framework provides higher value to organisations than ever before. Some benefits of COBIT 5.0 are:

  • It maintains high-quality information to support business decisions
  • It innovatively and effectively uses IT to achieve strategic goals
  • It uses reliable and efficient applications of technology to achieve operational excellence
  • It keeps IT-related risks low
  • It optimises IT service costs
  • It supports compliance with policies, agreements, relevant regulations and laws

Give your career the edge it needs and enroll in a COBIT 5.0 certification training program today.

Armin Vans
Archer Charles has top education industry knowledge with 4 years of experience. Being a passionate blogger also does blogging on the technology niche.

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