Forum on World Class IT - 299 Interviews and Podcasts

Welcome to the Forum on World Class IT podcast series, a collection of exclusive interviews with Chief Information Officers and other IT industry thought leaders. Learn from the experts on how best to establish a truly World Class IT organization.

Podcast tags Archives: Customer Focused IT

Jean Hill, Chief Technology Officer of First New York Securities

In this interview, Jean Hill, the Chief Technology Officer of First New York Securities, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Jean’s role at First New York Securities and her unusual path to become CTO
  • Jean’s business background and how it keeps her focused on the business value of technology
  • The necessity of educating users on how to take advantage of technology solutions
  • The process by which Jean transformed the IT organization
  • Eye on the Trends: Cloud computing and how enterprises will need to find a way to integrate all of the different cloud solutions they have.

Stewart McCutcheon, EVP and CIO of Ecolab, Inc.

In this interview, Stewart McCutcheon, CIO of Ecolab, Inc., discusses World Class IT principle one, People, principle three, Project and Portfolio Management, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The imperative of the IT organization’s strategy to look to become a source of competitive advantage for global organizations in the future
  • The various ways in which Stewart has built cross-functional capabilities to pull knowledge from the disparate functions of R&D, IT, and business, in a way that enables a greater understanding of the organization’s needs.
  • The important yet difficult conundrum of “build” versus “buy” in a global information technology organization, and the strategic importance of customization of systems and processes in creating competitive advantage
  • The challenges and opportunities Stewart identified when serving as the lead integrator of two merging companies with distinctive cultures and processes
  • Stewart’s unique promotion to CIO from the company acquired in a merger, and potential reasons behind the decision
  • Eye on the Trends: The success of high intensity, goal-oriented task forces formed to improve flawed processes, the growing trend of the CIO having core competency as a business person more so than a technologist

Donagh Herlihy, EVP of Digital and CIO of Bloomin' Brands

In this interview, Donagh Herlihy, Executive Vice President of Digital and CIO of Bloomin’ Brands, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle five, External Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • A review of Bloomin Brands and its entities across the United States
  • His role and responsibilities as EVP of Digital
  • How he manages the digital team, managing digital separately from IT
  • The digital consumer journey and how he engages customers to find insights amongst customer groups
  • How he feels about CIOs undertaking the responsibility of “Digital” within an enterprise
  • How he has taken on additional responsibilities within the organization
  • How he encourages his IT team to translate consumer technology advances to enterprise technology change
  • Eye on the Trends: Improving consumer technology and the consumerization of IT

Greg Meyers, CIO of Motorola Solutions

In this interview, Greg Meyers, CIO of Motorola Solutions, discusses World Class IT Principle One, People, and Principle Four, IT-Business Partnerships. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Motorola Solutions, and his role as CIO of the organization
  • Items on his roadmap for the year ahead
  • How he engages external customers and utilize those insights to create his IT strategy
  • The ways in which he interacts with other CIOs at customer organizations
  • The processes and skills that have been necessary to shift to a “customer-first” culture within IT
  • The methods he used to shift IT from a support organization to becoming a strategic enabler
  • How he has worked to insource some previously outsourced business processes
  • His career path through the pharmaceutical industry to his eventual hiring at Motorola Solutions
  • Eye on the Trends: The Internet of Things, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, and the Cloud

Chris Scalet, Former Executive Vice President of Global Services and Chief Information Officer of Merck

In this interview, Chris Scalet, the former EVP, Business Services and Chief Information Officer of Merck, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, principle two, Infrastructure, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How Chris familiarizes himself in new environments through engaging business leaders
  • How Chris’ role expanded as Merck built a multifunctional shared services capability
  • How Merck focused on the three step model of consolidate, integrate, and optimize
  • The evolving role of the CIO, and how CIOs have more opportunities to see across the business
  • How the CIO role has evolved such that CIOs are more about the business than they are technology
  • Eye on the Trends: Mobility and how it changes the way we interact with customers, business partners, and employees; the need for CIOs to embrace and appropriately manage consumerization of IT, and how cloud computing will become more pervasive

Suren Gupta, EVP of Technology & Operations at Allstate Insurance Company

In this interview, Suren Gupta, EVP of Technology & Operations of Allstate Insurance Company, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • The innovative ways in which Allstate has structured its organization to most effective facilitate a significant business transformation, specifically the various mechanisms used to capture and fund innovative ideas from the ground up
  • The various ways in which Stewart has built cross-functional capabilities to pull knowledge from the disparate functions of R&D, IT, and business, in a way that enables a greater understanding of the organization’s needs.
  • The importance of sourcing technologists that are first and foremost businesspeople when building talent
  • The challenges and opportunities Stewart identified when serving as the lead integrator of two merging companies with distinctive cultures and processes
  • Suren’s hesitance, throughout his career, to focus on getting to that “next level” and his prescribed alternative
  • The increasing importance of a flexible and effective organizational structure through which the key principles of operation, execution, enablement, development, innovation, and differentiation are supported
  • Eye on the Trends: The societal changes and possibilities that will come with leveraging data for wisdom, Allstate’s “innovation councils” composed of senior technology and business leaders with the purpose of bringing new ideas to life

John Marcante, Chief Information Officer of the Vanguard Group

In this interview, John Marcante, Chief Information Officer of the Vanguard Group, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT & Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How he works with colleagues and customers to develop technology to serve clients and manage investments
  • What traits he believes CIOs need in order to be successful given changing technology trends
  • The rotational program within Vanguard to move employees between IT and other divisional roles
  • IT’s role in championing digital within the organization
  • The methods he has used to bring start-up methodologies within a much larger organization
  • Talent management, and how he trains and recruits for needed new skills
  • The advantage of having IT personnel within other parts of the organization
  • The benefits of having IT’s own employees as customers of the organization
  • Eye on the Trends: Predictive Analytics, and Artificial Intelligence Engines

Mike Heim, CIO of Whirlpool

In this interview, Mike Heim, CIO of Whirlpool, discusses World Class IT principle one, People; principle three, Project and Portfolio Management; and principle four, IT & Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • His responsibilities as CIO
  • The benefits of being a product owner as well as a leader
  • How dramatic change has allowed him and his team to become front office collaborators as well as back office support
  • The future of IoT and its effects on home appliances
  • How IT addresses security in an increasingly digital world
  • A glimpse into how he managed to transform the workplace using Google Apps
  • IT’s role in the collaboration and development of new ideas
  • The governance and culture required to create an organization that is able to respond quickly
  • Eye on the Trends: Cloud computing, 3D printing, Machine learning

Bill Schlough, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer of the San Francisco Giants

In this interview, Bill Schlough, the SVP and Chief Information Officer of the San Francisco Giants and InformationWeek 2012 IT Chief of the Year, discusses World Class IT principle two, Infrastructure, principle four, IT and Business Partnerships, and principle five, External Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Delivering value through baseball competitive advantage, business optimization, and the fan experience
  • Partnering with innovative companies in the San Francisco Bay Area
  • Being CEO of the Giants’ Class A affiliate team
  • Seasonal planning, executing, and supporting around a baseball season
  • The value of a tech savvy executive team
  • Eye on the Trends: Leveraging cloud computing in order to refocus on core competencies and the power of social media, mobility, and TV everywhere in improving the fan experience

Joe Locandro, IT Director of Cathay Pacific

In this interview, Joe Locandro, IT Director for Cathay Pacific, the flag carrier airline of Hong Kong, discusses World Class IT principle two, infrastructure, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How Cathay Pacific’s mission statement of having the best technology is translated
  • The rising importance of digital customer experience
  • Ways in which innovation is managed at Cathay Pacific
  • Similarities across industries based on Joe’s previous IT leadership experiences
  • Eye on the Trends: Mobile consumption and the changing form factors. Increasing usage of biometrics