Taking an Investment Management Approach to IT
This article about managing IT projects features an interview with Joe Spagnoletti, CIO of Campbell Soup Company. Spangoletti discuses how he approaches the responsibilities of IT projects and who is accountable for the result. He states that Campbell Soup is moving from an order taking model to a demand driving model. This new model empowers business managers to have more say in IT investments and the IT project portfolio. This means that IT employees work closer with the business side of the company to have a better understanding of the business manager’s desired impact of the project. There are some negatives with this model. The first is determining who owns the decisions. It can be ambiguous who is responsible when an IT employee proposes an idea and the business employee accepts the plan. Another negative is that IT can face more scrutiny under this model. There is more transparency with IT costs and how much value is actually achieved. This puts IT under a magnifying glass and which can seem threatening to the department. Spagnoletti echoes one of the most important concepts of our class: IT decisions need to align with the business strategy. When IT works alone, the business does not get what it needs.
Where would we fall in this business/IT interaction? Would we be middlemen? How can companies face some of the downsides to this model?