COBIT 5

COBIT 5

COBIT stands for ‘Control Objectives for Information and Related Technologies. It was launched by a professional association ISACA, which stands for Information Systems Audit and Control Association, as a good-practice framework. Motive for creating COBIT was to establish a simplest and common medium for interactions among various business personalities.

First version of COBIT was released in 1996. Then, version 2 was developed in 1998 and it further evolved to version 3 in 2000. Version 4 and 4.1 were launched consecutively in years 2005 and 2007 respectively. The latest version, COBIT 5 was released in April 2012.

COBIT was created for management and governance of information technology. COBIT is meant for implementing IT practices (management and governance) to an organisation. One can monitor and thus improve the actions put forward towards the objectives. Thus, it has a whole hand on control requirements and technical issues.

Well settled organisations understand the purpose of COBIT. It helps in providing IT governance models, which further helps in delivering data from IT and inspecting the data to measure and manage risks and other factors.

After COBIT version 4.1, we have reached COBIT 5 which is the latest version of ISACA’s global framework. This version of COBIT provides a business executive with practices, models and various tools to help in increasing the efficiency and accuracy in values received from Information systems.

Key features of COBIT 5

  1. COBIT 5 is that it released with an evolution from COBIT 4.1’s Maturity Model to COBIT 5’s Process Capability Model. Both the Models perform same task but structure of framework in new Process Capability Model is modified.
  2. COBIT 5 gives a feature of Balanced Scorecard (BSC), which is used to understand the business values of IT. It is used in various organizations to measure the execution of enterprise in different areas.
  3. COBIT 5 is created to have more focus on Business and IT as an Integrated Form. This will help improving system of organization as clarifying roles and Communication and preventing enterprise getting harm by some information and technology related issues.
  4. COBIT 5 is developed to have more focus on goal of process, adding more value to approach used here as compared to that in COBIT 4.1.

This made COBIT 5 a whole new concept from the previous version, though it still performed the same task.

COBIT 5 was built on some basic but important principles. ISACA itself raised this principle which are:

 

How Does COBIT Benefit Organisation?

 Strategic Alignment

This is one of the strategic benefits of using COBIT in an organisation. COBIT helps to align IT goals of an organisation with strategic goals set for review purpose. This is especially true for larger organisations. Managing IT of an organisation is in a way managing an organisation in itself and for larger organisation, processes dependent on IT are many. Hence using COBIT can help an organisation identity and close gaps that may be present between the targets and goals set for an organisation and its Information Technology department.

Governance

A key benefit or features of COBIT is implementing IT Governance standard across the organisation. Using COBIT ensures that risk related to IT is minimised and effective controls and measures are put in place to ensure that all processes are monitored. Its effectiveness is attributed to the fact that the end-to-end business cycle is evaluated, monitored and controlled giving holistic governance to the IT organisation implementing COBIT.

Size independent

COBIT principles are globally accepted and help improve efficiency and effectiveness using its tools and techniques. It is also applicable on all industries and sectors irrespective of size. So, if an organisation plans to expand, the principles of governance and control will still remain relevant. Same is applicable for an organisation planning to shrink. Hence the methodologies remain effective irrespective of growth or otherwise.

Auditing

Audit experts for IT acknowledge that the principles laid down by COBIT helps organisations improve their information security. They also refer the tools of COBIT to evaluate IT governance for organisations. Being COBIT compliant hence can really benefit an organisation when auditors visit to check for compliance. Already having implemented COBIT can reduce last minute setup of policies and procedures for a planned or unplanned auditor check.

Industry Standards

Implementing COBIT also ensures that your organisation adheres to industry standards. This in turn benefits all the internal and external stakeholders of the firm. Internal in the sense that employees learn about industry benchmarks and use them to deliver their work. This leads to employee growth and greater efficiency at work. External stakeholders like clients and vendors also benefit from IT policies for data security and data quality. This leads to greater stakeholder satisfaction and improved overall organisational efficiency by adopting the industry standards set by COBIT.

COBIT and its tools can deliver benefits that every organisation – big or small aspires to achieve. Being strategic in goals and successfully using the Information Technology department as leverage can be very useful. Gaps can be minimised, and effective alignment of goals can be introduced to reap the rewards. Information Technology governance is also extremely critical for clients as they would not want to lose their sensitive information. Proper controls and measures from COBIT can help implement relevant processes to ensure data security. Audit clearance is also crucial to keep winning those contacts which are critical for a firm to remain in business. Industry-standard adhering organisations always across better on RFPs. COBIT can indeed help organisation improve their market value.

To sum it up, development of COBIT has shown a whole new way to controlling system for a Business executive. It, being a good-practice framework, has made management and governance easy like never before.

 

 

 

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