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The Australian National University

In last month’s issue we discussed  the elements of process and how they generate outputs within the InputTransform-Output (ITO) model. In this edition, we explain how project outputs can be used by project clients to generate the target outcomes for their project.

 

Target outcomes are essentially the business benefits described in the project objectives, and represent a change of some form. They are usually expressed through terms such as increased, decreased or improved – for example increased efficiency or decreased lead-time.

The realisation of outcomes occurs as the result of utilisation. Utilisation occurs when project clients make use of the project outputs. This raises the question: how do we define project clients?

Within the ITO framework, the conventional definition of clients is replaced with one where a client is defined as those who use or utilise the outputs generated by the project. The following example illustrates these concepts:

 

Project: ANU Email
Output: Additional communication tools (as part of the new email system)
Targeted Outcomes (one instance): Increased ANU communications capability
Project Customers for this outcome: ANU Staff and Students
[Source: http://itservices.anu.edu.au/project-updates/anu-email/outcomes.php]

This example demonstrates the three key concepts described earlier and identifies a target outcome. This outcome depends on the generation of an output, which is defined as the
additional tools/features the new email system offers. The final link between these two is the client (staff and students) who will utilise these new features as part of their email systems and potentially generate increased communications capability at ANU.

This concludes our series on the ITO model.

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by: Sharmeen Hussain

Updated: 8 November 2012/ Responsible Officer: Director, IS / Page Contact: ITS Project Office