Given the enormous costs of IT projects, Management rightly wants to know not only how much money is being spent, but also what the business is going to get out of it. Ms. Dekkers and Mr. Hopkins talk about how measurements can help demonstrate the value of IT projects, and can help prioritize them.
TEXT TRANSCRIPT: 7 November 2000
Copyright 2001 Quality Plus Technologies and Carol Dekkers. All rights reserved.
Announcer: Welcome to Quality Plus e-Talk! with Carol Dekkers. This program will focus on the latest in the field of technology. All comments, views, and opinions are those of the host, guests, and callers. Now let's join Carol Dekkers.
Carol: Welcome to Quality Plus e-Talk! It's Carol Dekkers here, and I run a company called Quality Plus Technologies, and we teach companies how to build better software. We do that through process improvement, through measurement, and a couple of other things. And I was fortunate enough last year to have actually the company that my guest works for as one of our clients. And I'd like to introduce you this evening to Paul Hopkins. Paul Hopkins is currently the director of information technologies for the engines strategic business units for Honeywell International, based right here in Phoenix, Arizona. He is responsible for the overall engines IS organization reporting to the engines and systems strategic business unit. He's involved with customer computing, engineering computing, concept and production development and operational support. And recently, he's been acquired, and I guess the entire company has been acquired by GE. So I'd like to welcome Paul Hopkins to the show.
Paul Hopkins: Great. Thanks, Carol.
Carol: And today we're going to talk a little bit about some of the challenges that Paul and Honeywell and some of the large corporations have been facing in the IT industry. We're going to talk a little bit about kind of the challenge that came to Paul in particular last year. Paul, do you want to mention a little bit about where you sit in the organization, what are some of the challenges that you faced? I know that you've held a lot of different organizational positions at Honeywell, and formerly when it was Allied Systems. Allied Signal. And you actually even held a role as the HR director?
Paul: I've had varying roles, yes, yes. Basically, if you think about the IT world, and what we're seeing, it's really not a new problem. It's something that's been around for awhile. But understanding the value that you bring to the business from an information technology organization. And what's unique about this is that there are ways to do it, but it's one of those things that tend to fall off the plate, and people tend not to focus on until they really have to again. So coming into the organization a little over a year ago, the question was posed, how do we measure productivity? How do we know we're doing the right things for the business? And actually, at that point, started our quest down the path to understanding how do we measure ourselves, how do we know we're doing the right things, and how do we eventually institutionalize that, so that it's something that can sustain over time.
Carol: Now Honeywell and...Honeywell's IT budget has got to be millions, billions.
Paul: Yeah, let's stay with the millions.
Carol: Okay. It's a lot more money than you and I will ever have, probably.
Paul: It's more than ten dollars, yes.
Carol: So in terms of this expense, as a lot of people kind of might view it...They