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Business and IT alignment: the importance of being focused on the same goals – Part 2

Missed part 1?

What are your key goals from a regional perspective in South Africa – what unique challenges are there?

Here in South Africa and in Africa generally our initial challenge is to raise awareness of what is really a hidden gem. There are several thousand people who have the title BRM here but no-one had heard of the BRM Institute until now. There are just as many people who have a role, including CIOs, who in reality fulfil a BRM-like function.

HR leaders and HR teams are also key targets for BRM both as a technique that they could use and also to drive technology skills development in their enterprises.

There are few ATOs offering BRM training and very few ATOs offering IT best practice training who deal with executives and the business side.


Posted in Business relationship management.

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If I get hacked, what next? – Part 2

Prepare for the worst!

It would be natural to try and protect the all information with the best controls but, in reality, the cost of such a policy is unrealistic in the vast majority of situations.

Therefore the best planning that can be done is to expect the worst situation to arise as an attack on the most valuable information held.

Then, with any luck, the plans put in place will be more than enough to deal with any situation that might arise.

The start of any incident is recognising that something untoward has actually happened.  It is vital to get to grips with the event as quickly as possible and ensure there is sufficient information to determine what has happened so as to drive the next steps to take.

In one incident, it was thought a physical breach had happened.  In fact it turned out that the suspected incident was actually a simple video recording that had been fed into a surveillance system and so no breach had actually occurred.

The initial investigation should determine as quickly as possible:


Posted in Cyber Security.

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If I get hacked, what next?

The chances of being hacked or suffering a breach of some sort is now higher than ever and only increasing.  It is vital that organisations, large and small, understand what they need to do after a breach, much of which can be summed up in a single word – planning.

This article explains what happens when an organisation is breached, using some examples of real incidents, and then provides some advice on what needs to be done in anticipation of that event.

How do I know I’ve been hacked?

Some of the following may be an indicator that you have been hacked – just being aware is a good start, and means you should do something:


Posted in Cyber Security.

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Why do so many business projects fail to deliver?

And how Managing Benefits can make a difference?

Huge amounts of time and resource go into delivering projects, but how often do businesses reach the end of a project and realize it hasn’t delivered the outcomes and benefits they set out to achieve? You might be surprised to know that 50% of respondents to a KPMG Survey* of 100 businesses across a broad cross section of industries indicated that their project failed to consistently deliver the benefits they were initiated to provide.  It seems that traditional project management methods alone might not be as effective as they should be. Could this failure be down to the fact that only half of all project managers hold a formal qualification? Or even that those with PM qualifications are somehow losing sight of desired outcomes and benefits along the way?

Posted in Accreditation, Qualifications.

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Business Case capability improvement – a myth or a reality?

A question that APMG is often asked is “show me where the knowledge that you create in a training product is being used to increase capability? “

Many examples exist, a legacy of delivering certified training products for 23 years across the globe.  In the area of Business Case capability, the investment that The Treasury has made in the New Zealand Government highlights what can be achieved through an integrated approach.

If capability is defined as the power or ability to do something, then the approach taken by The Treasury has definitely resulted in improved capability.  Theory from the APMG Better Business Case (BBC) certification states that improving business case development will;

  • Reduce unnecessary spend and optimize public value;
  • Reduce consultancy costs;
  • Provide faster delivery and a clear proportionate approval process; and
  • Improve the quality of decision making.
  • Continued…

Posted in Accreditation, Qualifications.

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Business and IT alignment: the importance of being focused on the same goals – Part 1

Based in Cape Town, South Africa, ITWinners is a consulting and education company founded by Gary Hardy. Focusing on the learning and development of people in enterprises linked to business strategy, their goal is to deliver business value from skills development and to facilitate adoption of improved working practices by coaching and guiding people at work.


Posted in Business relationship management, Qualifications.

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Raising the Bar on Benefits Management

Let’s be realistic – benefits don’t just happen; benefits don’t just get realized by themselves.  In fact, benefits from programs and projects are often not realized unless they and the required business changes are proactively managed during and typically post-initiative closure.

We have all seen it, the dilemma when a program or project is closed out: resources, decision makers and funding are all disbanded, but the benefits are not yet realized.  Benefits take time, money and resourcing to be realized.  But whose role is it?  The project manager is onto the next project, other resources are consumed elsewhere and senior management’s attention is focused on the next challenge.


Posted in Accreditation, Events, Qualifications.

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The Importance of a Good Business Case

The UK has over 900 public sector organisations, with each typically planning and procuring around 10 key investments every year. As vast amounts of money are being invested around the country on new projects, a number of questions arise: How can we ensure value for money? How can we ensure we have selected the correct course of action? How can we ensure these investments are justified?

The answer lies in the business case. Business cases should provide scrutiny, ensuring that what is proposed is:


Posted in Accreditation.

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Raise the bar: Prove your technical competence with an accredited certification


9th June is celebrated as the World Accreditation Day (#WAD2017) internationally and so we at APMG are taking this opportunity to drive the importance of what we do best, accreditation!

Accreditation is a formal recognition by an authoritative body of the competence to work to specified standards. All accreditation standards include the principles of quality management systems, such as those found in well-recognized the ISO 9001 QMS standard. ‘Source: Planning and Building Control Today.


Posted in Accreditation, Qualifications.

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The Symbiotic Relationship Between COBIT 5 and NIST CSF


Take three things:

1. Legislative requirements.
2. The Cyberworld.
3. Running a Business.

They are a disaster awaiting to happen unless we have a clear understanding of what is needed to achieve:

• Legal compliance.
• Cyber threat management.
• Crisis and business continuity responses.

They have been around for a long time in some shape or form. Why mention them again, now?

Because legislation is becoming more stringent, compensating for the fast-moving developments in IT that favour the criminal at the expense of people and business.


Posted in COBIT 5.

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