Corning Vice President & CIO Mark Clark shares his thoughts on successful IT transformation with Axiom Consulting Partners’ Don Ruse, with a focus on three key areas that drive business outcomes.
Don Ruse: Share your thoughts on some of the key changes in how IT works that are required to get this competitive advantage that digital technologies can provide us today.
Mark Clark: The best way to answer that is when I think about IT in the past, we were very much the guys that were pounding the nails and building the house. In this world today, because we have so many citizen developers and outside managed services and other things that can bring those services to Corning, our job has shifted more into the architecture and design aspects of this. So we are engineering and helping to partner with businesses to devise what the right solutions are. We are trying to help them identify how to take value out of the technology that we are bringing to the table and then working in partnership with them to deliver that. In some cases that delivery will be done through others so we have to be good at managing the contract manufacturers with which we interact.
DR: It sounds like that represents a pretty big change for the IT workforce. Can you share your thoughts how big a change you think that is for IT today versus yesterday, and some of the challenges that you are seeing in helping the workforce make that transition?
MC: First and foremost, we have to recognize that the workers that we interoperate with are much more technically savvy. So the good news for IT is that it takes a little of the pressure off IT to be there like we were in the old days to help them understand how to use the technology. They have a pretty good grasp of how to use PCs and they are used to using software to solve business problems. But what it is requiring and what is changing for IT, is our ability to understand business process and be a business partner; understand the business dynamics of the technology and how to effect a business change to drive value. That is clearly changing, and from that perspective it is requiring our folks to have a much better understanding of how to be businesses savvy, provide better influence – the emotional intelligence aspects of it – and to work through others. So, learning how to partner through third parties and their business partners who are doing some of the work collaboratively back and forth.
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