The COBIT IT management framework was first developed by ISACA in 1996 as a means to assist corporations in creating, organising, and implementing strategies pertaining to information management and enterprise governance. It has since become a globally recognised and utilised framework that has helped to drive innovation in enterprises worldwide. Any stakeholder with duties related to the governance or management of enterprise IT will benefit from understanding the framework. In this article, we discuss the key features of COBIT 2019 and how it can empower its participants to practice effective enterprise governance.
What is COBIT 2019?
COBIT stands for Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology. Like many IT management frameworks, COBIT aims to bridge the gap between business goals and IT goals, as well as between IT silos. However, what sets it apart from other frameworks is its strict focus on security and enterprise governance. COBIT 2019 steers away from the traditional topics of managing technology, IT-related decision-making, and the management of technology. Instead, it stays squarely in the realm of organisational governance and management.
In a nutshell, the framework aims to promote effective governance through resource optimisation and risk management, such that maximum value can be generated for stakeholders. To that end, COBIT 2019 guides companies in developing their own governance strategy in a few ways. First, it defines the components of a sustainable governance system, including processes, policies, organisational structures, and so on. Second, it describes how businesses can align their existing frameworks to craft an overall business strategy.
Updates from COBIT 5
COBIT 2019 is the latest version of the COBIT framework, having been improved from the previous iteration, COBIT 5. COBIT 2019 has been updated to address the latest trends, security needs, and technologies among enterprises. These include changes to other IT management frameworks such as ITIL 4. New concepts and terminologies have also been introduced into the Core Model. Here some of the updates that were highlighted by ISACA:
- Addresses new technology trends: Includes DevOps, Agile concepts, outsourcing, Internet of Things (IoT), etc.
- Updated with latest standards: Allows for the alignment of the framework to concepts in other regulatory sources, such as compliance regulations or other IT standards.
- Improves flexibility: The framework now provides more guidance regarding the definition and usage of design factors. Participants can better tailor the content to suit their individual organisation’s and user’s contexts.
- Introduction of focus areas: A focus area is a particular governance topic that can be dealt with using a series of governance strategies. Some examples include SMEs, cloud computing, and cybersecurity. This gives organisations more clarity when creating a governance system.
- Online collaboration feature: In a shift to a more open-source model, COBIT users can now contribute by offering recommendations for further updates. This ensures that insights from the global governance community are considered, and allows for more frequent updates. Updates are vetted by a COBIT Steering Committee.
Components of COBIT 2019
COBIT 2019 is composed of four core publications. Each of them builds on the concepts of the COBIT framework and how it can be used to create a tailored governance system for your organisation.
- COBIT 2019 Framework: Introduction and Methodology: This publication lays out the overall framework structure. Some new concepts introduced include an expanded definition of IT governance, updated COBIT principles, and the COBIT Core Model.
- COBIT 2019 Framework: Governance and Management Objectives: This publication goes deeper into the 40 governance/management objectives in the COBIT Core Model. The objectives are defined and linked to related processes. Other applicable governance components are also included.
- COBIT 2019 Framework: Designing an Information and Technology Governance Solution: This publication provides a how-to guide for developing a governance approach that addresses the unique context of the organisation. The guide discusses various design factors and recommends workflows to promote tailored governance system design.
- COBIT 2019 Framework: Implementing and Optimising an Information and Technology Governance Solution: This publication discusses the implementation of governance strategies. In addition to best practices, it also describes how to integrate COBIT 2019 and COBIT 5 strategies.
As a highly adaptable framework for enterprise governance of IT, any stakeholder in this field would benefit from learning about COBIT 2019. Here at BridgingMinds, we offer a 3-day COBIT 2019 Foundation course which can equip you with all the relevant knowledge you need to attain your COBIT 2019 Foundation certification.
Given that COBIT 2019 is meant to be used in tandem with other IT management frameworks, it would be beneficial to learn about those as well. We offer several courses that deal with such situations, including the ITIL 4 Foundation training course. As for software development frameworks, we also provide several Agile training courses which are bound to benefit any IT professional. Gain all the skills you need to manage your organisation’s IT with BridgingMinds.