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Why It’s Vital for CIOs to Speak in Business Terms, by Peter High in CIO Insight

Peter High


Excerpt from the Article:

The mission of Word & Brown is to simplify access to better health insurance choices. Privately held for 30 years by entrepreneurs John Word and Rusty Brown, the organization connects businesses to industry-leading solutions in every area of health insurance and employee benefits.

When Allen Fazio joined the company in May of 2014, as Fazio tells CIO Insight contributor, Peter High, the team had a lot of talent, but it was not a high performing team. He embarked on a major transformation that continues today, and Fazio has helped technology bring value to the enterprise.

CIO Insight: What role does IT play in driving Word & Brown’s business?

Allen Fazio: As with many successful 30-year-old organizations, at The Word & Brown Companies, IT plays a critical role on several fronts: transforming current operations by providing technology solutions to streamline operations, move traditional products and services to a Web/mobile consumption model, and manage higher transaction volume at marginal cost; modernizing the legacy systems that have been the backbone to the success of the business; reducing technology operating costs; and leveraging the technology portfolio to gain greater levels of value from technology assets.

CIO Insight: You are not a “back-office only” CIO. Across your career, you have focused on delivering customer-facing technologies, as well as helping to run the operation of the company. How have you inspired your teams to follow your lead to become more cognizant of customer needs?

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