Forum on World Class IT - 311 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: IT-Business Communication

Randy Spratt, World Class IT Principle Three, Project and Portfolio Management, eSeminar with Randy Spratt, Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer of McKesson

This interview is the third in a special series of five eSeminars covering the Five Principles of World Class IT. The five interviews will be broadcast in sequential weeks, and in this conversation on P3-Project & Portfolio Management, Randy Spratt discusses the following ideas:

  • The governance improvements that he undertook upon ascending to be the head of technology for the world’s largest healthcare company
  • The councils that he has assembled to vet and prioritize work across IT related to the many massive business units that his team supports
  • The methods he has used to develop process standards where relevant and appropriate across IT
  • The processes that he and his team use to find ideas in one part of the organization that have broader implications for McKesson as a whole, as well as the means by which he spreads them
  • The methods Randy uses to communicate the efficacy of his portfolio of projects both internally (within IT) and externally (with his colleagues outside of IT)

Dee Waddell, Acting Chief Information Officer of Amtrak

In this interview, Dee Waddell, Acting Chief Information Officer of Amtrak, discusses World Class IT principle three, Project & Portfolio Management, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • How Amtrak differs from other travel organizations
  • Amtrak’s new eTicketing initiative improves the customer experience and optimizes internal processes
  • Amtrak IT evolving to focus on the business and deliver business value
  • The recent development of a Project Management Office and an Enterprise Architecture Group
  • The creation of Amtrak’s corporate strategy through a series of working sessions and collaborative efforts
  • Eye on the Trends: Mobility and how it can drive innovations, cloud computing and the cost benefits it offers, as well as social media and collaboration technologies, and how they can help reduce silos within an organization

Aaron Levie, CEO and Co-Founder of Box

In this interview, Aaron Levie, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Box, a leader in online file sharing and cloud content management, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, principle two, Infrastructure, and principle five, External Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Themes of the upcoming BoxWorks conference
  • Box’s ability to attract and retain top talent from other IT firms
  • Box’s focus on delivering enterprise IT solutions through a consumer IT approach
  • Eye on the Trends: Yesterday’s competitors are becoming today’s partners in IT. As consumers and enterprises demand more flexibility, connectivity, and functionality often from the same device, different solutions providers have to collaborate

Matt Carey, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer of The Home Depot

In this interview, Matt Carey, EVP and CIO of The Home Depot, discusses World Class IT principle four, IT & Business Partnerships, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Matt’s role at Home Depot and the steps Home Depot has taken to improve its technology preparedness since he joined
  • How Home Depot used technology to transform itself to a customer-centric retailer despite the global economic downturn of 2007 and 2008
  • How Home Depot integrate IT and Business functions to facilitate understanding across the enterprise and ultimately improve customer experience
  • Matt’s involvements in multiple Board of Directors and the unique advantages that can be gained from serving as a member of a Board of Directors
  • The historical reasons behind why CIOs haven’t traditionally served on Boards and Matt’s advice for other CIOs who wish to become Board-ready
  • The changing expectation, roles, and responsibilities in today’s corporate IT departments
  • Eye on the Trends: The increasing desire of boards to include CIOs as companies, regardless of industry, and their customers become more technology centric with regard to the services provided or desired

Steve Betts, SVP and CIO of Health Care Service Corporation

In this interview, Steve Betts, SVP and CIO of Health Care Service Corporation, discusses World Class IT principle 1, People, and principle 3, Project and Portfolio Management, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

  • Healthcare Service Corporation and his role within the organization
  • How he transitioned to a new industry and how that affected his initial plans on joining the organization
  • How he organized his time to understand his new team and organization
  • The strategy that came out of his initial time at the organization
  • Some of the ways in which he has gauged success
  • How he has contemplated change within the organization amongst its people
  • Lessons as to how he has harnessed the power of Big Data
  • Developing more member-centric capabilities

David Thompson, EVP, Global Operations and Technology, CIO of Western Union

This is one in a series of interviews with financial services CIOs conducted in collaboration with CIO Straight Talk magazine. Read additional articles by other technology executives at

    In this interview, David Thompson, Executive Vice President of Global Operations and Technology and the Chief Information Officer at The Western Union Company, discusses World Class IT Principle Two, Infrastructure; and Principle Four, IT and Business Partnerships. Some of the topics discussed include:

    • Approaches to safeguarding company data
    • Building partnerships to facilitate innovation
    • The role IT plays in enhancing customer experience and supporting the engineering team’s new technologies
    • Increasing significance of omnichannel experience in financial services
    • Real time risk assessment tools used to address changing regulations

    Remy Evard, CIO of the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR)

    In this interview, Remy Evard discusses three principles of World Class IT with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include

    • The unique role of an IT division that supports research scientists whose mission is discovery, as opposed to an IT division that supports a business division more responsible for revenues and costs
    • How technology can enable global research and foster innovation by leveraging the scale of the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research
    • The way in which Remy, as a new CIO, went about gaining credibility with the business and scientists through “quick wins,” and the natural progression that the IT department followed once that credibility was established
    • NIBR’s data initiative to manage decades of legacy information and how to ensure sound knowledge management
    • The challenges of governance and managing a budget in a non-traditional IT environment, which requires flexibility in order to accommodate research projects
    • The potential of new technologies, such as Web 2.0, mobile devices, and deep sequencing, to change the way in which scientific research is conducted

    Susan Cramm, Founder and President of Valuedance

    In this interview, Susan Cramm, Founder and President of Valuedance, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, and principle four, IT-Business Partnerships with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

    • Susan’s perspectives concerning the potential of the role of CIO
    • How IT is an enterprise asset and should be managed as such, and how organizations have the IT capabilities they deserve
    • Susan’s book 8 Things We Hate About IT: How to Move Beyond the Frustrations to Form a New Partnership with IT, and the value it provides
    • How IT leaders need to communicate costs and value in business terms
    • Eye on the Trends: How technology will be embedded in services and products, and that major trends such as mobility, cloud, web services, collaboration, analytics, etc. all really lock in together

    Cathy Bessant, Global Technology and Operations Executive of Bank of America

    In this interview, Cathy Bessant, Group Technology and Operations executive at Bank of America, the second largest bank holding company in the US by assets, discusses World Class IT principle one, People, principle four, IT & Business Partnership, with Metis Strategy. Some of the topics discussed include:

    • How she manages multiple CIOs and senior IT executives that report to her
    • Reducing spending should not equate to under-spending, which curtails growth
    • The shifting away of focus on deeply technical and engineering backgrounds for IT executives at large corporations
    • The complementary roles of chief marketing officer and IT executives
    • How board work can be a valuable training for executives to rise within their own organizations
    • Eye on the Trends:It is a hard time for the banking industry in general, and firms like BOA will continue to reduce risk, integrate acquisitions, and decrease operating costs through superior IT

    Peter High, Implementing World Class IT Strategy: How IT Can Drive Organizational Innovation

    Peter High discusses his Book “Implementing World Class IT Strategy: How IT Can Drive Organizational Innovation.” Some of the topics discussed include:

    • Principles that the best information technology executives follow
    • The acute need for IT strategy to be developed with the broader organizational strategy
    • The role of CIO as a driver of a technology strategy that is woven into overall business objectives at the enterprise and business unit levels
    • Specific case examples that illustrate the various ways that IT strategy can be developed to do more than simply fall in line with business strategy
    • Thoughts on real, actionable steps for CIOs that both increase the executive’s value to the organization and unite business with IT in a manner that produces highly successful outcomes