Research & Thoughts

IT Complexity Metrics – How Do You Measure Up?

Part 2: Commerzbank / Capco IT Complexity model in detail

This is the second Capco Thoughts white paper in the IT Complexity series. The series describes a groundbreaking initiative underway by Germany-based Commerzbank and Capco to develop a model for measuring IT complexity in the financial services industry. We have already explained the importance and the power of rigorous IT Complexity metrics in our first paper. Now we describe how it works in detail.

IT Complexity is so important that ‘learning through failing’ is no longer satisfactory given that this form of complexity so clearly and harshly impacts the cost, delivery quality and flexibility of the IT landscape.

We now need a robust and functioning model for complexity measurement and mitigation. This paper describes how Commerzbank, in partnership with Capco, is deriving such a model. It also examines how it can be developed over time to provide a cross-industry standard. Specifically, this paper looks at:

  • The shape of the model – how does Commerzbank, with Capco’s input, model complexity at the moment.
  • The key components – a deconstruction of the key components of a rigorous understanding of complexity – the indicators – covering applications, interfaces, data and infrastructure.
  • A pathway to live implementation – overview of the key steps required for an organization to start using rigorous, predictive complexity insight as a management lever.

Typically, the CIO scorecard contains the following key performance indicators: costs, flexibility and quality. Sadly, these are ‘lagging’ indicators whose current values typically result from choices made many years previously. Most experts agree that IT Complexity is a key hidden variable, but difficult to master.

Commerzbank and Capco have worked out a practical solution, by creating an IT Complexity model and management decision tool. To read the first paper in the series, download our Part 1: IT Complexity: Model, Measure and Master thought paper.