André Spatz: People, Processes and Technology

People, processes and technology—these three, in that order, are the keys to managing any successful it organization. To gain the best results in each of these key areas, a cio should emphasize skills and competencies, services management and governance, and, as the organization matures, implement an adequate project investment portfolio. More specifically, to build a global it organization that delivers business benefits, consider the following:

Centralize the entire IT function

Treat IT as a service business within the context of the larger organization.

Enforce global standards and reduce the technology footprint

Standardize and streamline the technology footprint, including the number of strategic partners you deal with. But allow for standards that permit localization.

Validate the strategy “on the road”

Present the IT strategy as a hypothesis, and take it around the world as a management road show, testing and validating it with the divisions and local management teams. Continue these road shows during and after the strategy has been implemented to obtain feedback and make adjustments.

Be consistent

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, be consistent, repeat yourself and enforce your principles. Lessons learned are only valuable when applied.

Deliver on your promises

Demonstrate short-term results and balance them with your long-term goals.

Establish standard skill sets and competencies

Enable staff rotation to foreign offices without re-training.

No technology in a vacuum

No IT projects, only business projects with IT components

No management in a vacuum

No IT project without business and IT owners, and no “sponsors,” please, only committed and accountable “owners” for results and completion.

Build a multicultural framework

Have an appreciation of what it takes to bring people of different cultures together. Without it you cannot achieve globalization.

Develop a “mosaic view” of the world

Understand how IT, business and processes are related. When one piece changes, it impacts somewhere else because it is part of an integrated, global picture.

Never stop making the rounds

Appreciate cultural diversity, as it is the only way to lead a multicultural workforce.

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