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Roundtable: Future-Proofing the IT Organization

At the IT Media Group’s recent CIO Master Series roundtable, held March 4 in Calgary, senior IT executives from a cross-section of companies had a lively discussion on the topic of “Future-proofing your IT Organization”. Three executives from event sponsor IBM Canada also shared their expertise on the subject, drawing on their experiences with other clients.

A resonating theme throughout the discussion was the migration of various traditional IT functions to the business. Examples were given of large projects being managed by the business, with little or no involvement by the IT organization. One attendee noted that he had transferred the IT resources to support applications to the business, which owns the entire lifecycle of those applications.

While the IT organization may find itself less involved with things like project management and maintaining applications, one attendee argued that its role will remain vital, if not expand, in areas such as innovation, guidance, managing process, and building a sound IT architecture. As well, IT needs to shift its role to that of trusted advisor – one that can be counted on to get things done and be an enabler rather than a hindrance. The IT executive needs to be able to pull the right kinds of products or resources into the conversation with the business early enough that the business can make good choices.

Roundtable members also noted that a real strength of IT lies in the fact that it controls the processes, which today are baked into the technology. As one participant put it, “We are the processes, which gives us quite a bit of control.”

With the proliferation of new applications, driven to some extent by Cloud, IT executives are also facing a challenge in decommissioning legacy apps. IBM executives pointed out that savings can be made by rationalizing and standardizing applications but it takes a lot of discipline and governance.

Session Highlights Videos

IT Governance

Developments such as Cloud and consumer technologies are changing the dynamics between IT and the business, necessitating a renewed emphasis on governance


Becoming The Trusted Advisor

How does IT stop being a bottleneck to avoid business users going their own way.


Decommissioning Applications

Managing the application portfolio should include the retirement of obsolete applications


Business Management of IT Projects

Unless you're addressing infrastructure, most projects are business projects, even if they are IT based.


Post session interviews

Lyonel Kawa - Director, IT, LaFarge Canada


Francois Lafortune - VP, Information Technology, ENMAX


About CIO Master Series roundtables

Roundtables produced by The IT Media Group provide the ideal format for frank and open discussion among IT executive peers, allowing them to explore issues in depth, with a judicious amount of expert facilitation. These sessions are designed specifically for small groups of IT leaders, enabling them to take away practicable new approaches, validate their own thoughts, brainstorm ideas, and share their successes and their pain.

IT executives interested receiving notification of upcoming CIO Master Series roundtables, please complete the VIP membership form on the right of this page, including business email address.

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