Australia will lead a new international working group to develop and harmonise international standards on corporate governance of IT.
The primary role of the new working group will be to develop standards and related documents to assist directors, top executives and CIOs with corporate governance of their IT systems and networks.
Standards Australia has been appointed secretariat and convenor of the group and will report to the ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee for Information Technology (JTC1), which is comprised of representatives from national standards bodies around the world.
Chair of Standards Australia’s IT-030 Committee, Mark Toomey, said the corporate governance standards are intended to guide the IT-related behaviour of an organisation.
“There are six principles: responsibility, strategy, acquisition, performance, conformance and human behaviour,” he said.
“There are various levels of explanation but in my view the key principle is responsibility, which is about making sure that the responsibility for an organisation’s use of IT is properly assigned, clearly understood and actually discharged. Many organisations don’t necessarily do a good job of that.”
Toomey said the standards will apply to all organisations and be just as helpful for IT providers in running their own business effectively as it will be for their customers.
“For a reseller, there is the obvious expectation that a customer that conforms with this standard is going to be a better customer. A better customer will be a more successful customer, easier to deal with, and will not cause the angst that sometimes happens when a customer makes a poor decision,” he said.
Key tasks of the group will be the standardisation and harmonisation of IT terminology and the ongoing maintenance of ISO/IEC 38500, which is the international standard for corporate governance of IT that is closely based on the Australian Standard for Corporate Governance of ICT (AS 8015).
“Directors, top executives and CIOs should definitely understand what ISO/IEC 38500 and AS 8015 are about,” Toomey said.
“They will find that if their organisations can adopt the standard and exhibit the behaviour that the standard seeks, they should expect to be more successful than other organisations with the use of IT.”
Standards Australia CEO, John Tucker, said the opportunity to lead the working group was an opportunity for Australia to continue to influence the global IT community in decision making and development of international standards.
“Australia’s appointment to head up this working group is testament to the expertise and knowledge of Standards Australia’s IT-030 Committee,” he said.