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Why is Business Relationship Management (BRM) so important in today’s rapidly evolving IT world?

The LEF has been following the BRM trend for many years, and in our past research we have observed four different business/IT relationship models – those of Provider, Promoter, Partner and Peer – and thus four distinct roles that Enterprise IT must address if the function is to contribute fully at all levels of the business. (Ref to image).

Business RPrintelationship Management has always been an important capability, even in the days when IT was primarily a means of driving efficiencies and reducing costs – the Provider role.  Today, as IT moves to the front of the firm, leveraging the full spectrum of BRM roles has become essential if Enterprise IT is to serve the business by also providing competitive edge and driving growth.  Given the growing power and impact of information and communications technologies, this covers not only the operational needs of the business, but also its strategic directions.

Business Relationship Managers (BRMs) therefore require ‘double-deep’ capabilities:  a broad knowledge of the business coupled with a good understanding of relevant technologies, including their risks and limitations.  In addition, the capable BRM needs change management skills and experience, and the ability to think strategically.  Personal attributes are critically important here:  BRMs need well-honed communications skills and a confident style that projects their authority – personal power that is independent of hierarchical position.  Some people have an innate ability to project themselves in this way; most will need to develop the aptitude, reinforcing their credibility with their own knowledge and experience.  People who succeed in the BRM role should be prime candidates for future positions elsewhere in the business.

To learn more on this topic, join me on a webinar on Business Relationship Management: A bridge between business value and technology on 13 November 2014, at 15:00 BST especially targeted at organizations that could be keen to consider more formal BRM training and certification. Click to register.

This post is written by Tudor Rees, Research Associate, CSC’s Leading Edge Forum.

Posted in Accreditation, Business relationship management, Exams.

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One Response

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  1. Jamie Payne says

    Ok to get the ball rolling. Having worked with numerous organisations in developing BRM’s one thing that is important for them to grasp especially in the context of the above Provider to Peer illustration is that: It is context driven. One the one hand a continuum in that we want folk to move up the scale, and to operate more often in the partner peer box. But this can also be difficult depending on organisational readiness and maturity/also industry type. So agility is also required in knowing when to be in each space. There is still often the requirement for provider. However it is a great model to use simple, clarity of trajectory, but useful to appreciate where resource is situationally and strategically applied. Looking forward to hearing more Tudor. – Best Jamie