School of Information Systems

Comparing COBIT 4.1 and COBIT 5.0 (Part 1)

Today, InformationTechnology (IT) management within the organization has become critical. Information technology plays an important role because the organization relies heavily on IT in running its business operations.

More organization realize the need for good IT management and provide a better effort in performing the standardization of policies and procedures in IT Department, in order to make alignment between IT strategy and business strategy.

       IT governance is an important issue on the agenda of most organization today. Effective IT governance provides a mechanism that allows the management information system and technology develop integrated business, IT strategic planning, allocate responsibility and priority ofIT initiatives,therefore organization can gain maximum benefits from IT investment, which is making the right decisions at the right time as well.

       To achieve good IT governance, organization need a framework that can control the use of resources in IT, which include application, information, infrastructure and people. The framework is the Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT).

       According to Peterson (2004), IT management focuses on the effective and efficient supply of IT products, and management of IT operations. IT Governance performs two functions, first it contributes to “present business operations and performance” and second, it transforms and positions “IT for meeting future business challenges”.

For example, IT management of an organization might be concerned with maintaining computers and ensuring enough laptops for everyone in the organization. IT governance requires senior management and IT management work together to identify those who need computers, human recources, budget, and other things related to the goals of the organization. While IT management attends to the delivery of IT services and manages IT equipment; IT governance works to ensure IT management meets the long term goals of the organization. The coordination of strategic goals and tactical goals between IT management and senior management is called alignment. Alignment is the primary focus of IT governance. Ultimately, “alignment evolves into a relationship where the function of IT and other business functions adapt their strategies together”, Luftman(2004). COBIT provides the tools for organizations to implement and evaluate IT governance.

       COBIT 4.1 is the most complete guidance of best practices for IT governance framework that include four domains: plan and organize (PO), acquire and implement (AI), deliver and support (DS), and monitor & evaluate (ME).

COBIT 4.1 also provides a Maturity Model that can be used to provide a description of each Maturity Level for each IT processes. Through Maturity Level, organizationwill know the current maturity level and can achieve higher maturity level by implementing control objectives from COBIT 4.1.