Gartner Research

Organization Structure: Application Management

Published: 21 July 2006

ID: G00141602

Analyst(s): Jeff Comport, Kathy Harris


There is no single "best" IT organization structure. Instead, there are variations on three common themes -- centralized, decentralized and federated. Trends such as outsourcing, global-class applications and virtual work environments are challenging traditional thinking about organization design.

Table Of Contents
  • Overview
  • Introduction
  • Functional Responsibilities of AM
    • Context of Functional Responsibilities Context and the Activity Cycle
    • Scope of the AM Role
    • Phase Objectives of the Activity Cycle
  • Application Organization Structures
    • Principle 1: Provide the "right" expertise for each application throughout its life cycle.
    • Principle 2: Allocate the appropriate resources to each phase of the AM activity cycle.
    • Principle 3: Build in the flexibility to adapt to change.
    • Principle 4: Optimize the cost of application resources.
  • Best Practices of World-Class Organizations
    • Best Practice 1: Know the satisfaction level of your application owners and users, and how this knowledge is managed through the AM activity cycle.
    • Best Practice 2: Avoid competency center overload.
    • Best Practice 3: Keep the number of AM layers to a minimum.
    • Best Practice 4: Distribute more of the responsibility for applications to cross-functional teams/communities.
    • Best Practice 5: Right-size your application organization.
  • Common AM Jobs, Titles and Descriptions
    • All-Application AM
    • Second-Level AM
  • Other Management Relationships
    • The CIO Team
    • High-Impact Competency Centers

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