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CIO Balances Risk, Productivity and Strategy, by Peter High in CIO Insight Article

Peter High

06-11-2015

Excerpt from the Article:
From its founding in 1955, PAE has offered enduring support for the essential missions of a wide range of customers, including the U.S. government, its allied partners and international organizations. PAE’s current portfolio includes capabilities in critical facility infrastructure, aviation, logistics, training, range operations and national security solutions, to support complex missions for customers around the world.

John Lambeth is the CIO of PAE and is responsible for all aspects of IT strategy, corporate application development and IT support to large-scale customer facing programs. Additionally, he is responsible for internal IT transformation initiatives, as well as providing support to customer programs and business development. CIO Insight contributor Peter High discusses with Lambeth data security, taking risks and the latest trends in IT.

CIO Insight: Your role as CIO of PAE has required that you spend time in some pretty difficult environments. Can you talk about your experiences, and the role that IT plays in these remote locations?

John Lambeth: PAE relies on IT to support its customers, even in the most difficult environments. As CIO for PAE, I have had the opportunity to spend time in locations such as Kabul, Afghanistan, and Baghdad, Iraq. I believe that it is only through going into these environments that a CIO can truly understand the challenges that field operators have in using sophisticated technologies in tough environments. My experiences also tell me that field employees appreciate corporate leadership coming out to the field, sleeping a CHU [containerized housing unit] next to them and experiencing a day in their shoes.

Information technology plays a unique role at PAE. We run the enterprise solutions that support business operations. We also play multiple roles supporting the external customer through deploying infrastructure in support of new contracts and providing logistical, supply chain and analytical systems. Corporate IT staff members will routinely travel to these environments and I believe that the team needs to see me out there in these places as well.

CIO Insight: What are your priorities for the foreseeable future?

Lambeth: Over the last year, PAE has undertaken a significant business transformation initiative that will carry us forward into the foreseeable future. Multiple IT systems have also been replaced or transformed as a result.

Because of their physical location at customer locations, in remote geographic locations or classified environments, employee access to these transformed systems varies greatly. One of my key objectives for this year is to transform data from these systems into information that can be delivered using a comprehensive mobility strategy.

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