I enjoyed "Diving Into Dashboards" [June 2006 issue] and wanted to relay a past experience of mine in building a dashboard for a CEO. When I checked on the CEO's progress two months after deploying the dashboard, I learned he was using only part of the tool. I asked why, and he responded it was clear I didn't understand his job, which was largely to discover and deal with problems. Further, he needed an updated dashboard every couple of months, by which point he was dealing with a new set of problems. I learned that at higher levels of an organization, dashboards need to report on what isn't working.
The Art of the PMO
Your article on establishing a project management office (PMO) was insightful ["Project Powerhouse," May issue]. I have some additional thoughts:
- The PMO must establish a clear mechanism to quantify PMO value.
- The flow of information throughout an organization should begin and end with the PMO.
- A PMO should not be used as the unloading site for all of IT's problems. Problems are symptoms, and the PMO should deal with the underlying cause(s).
- The PMO is the one entity with a hand in every business unit, thus it can provide the scope and speed to implement necessary organizational improvements.
- Companies should look at themselves as being pre- and post-PMO to gauge the value of the PMO.
Satish R. Iyer
HTC Global Services
Measure, Don't Assume Success
I read "If You Can Measure IT, You Can Manage IT" [Business Mentor, April issue]. With a background in Six Sigma and as the head of IT at TechHealth, I plan to implement metrics to gauge IT performance by sending out a satisfaction survey. I hope to grasp the perception of IT within my company and to improve on the marks IT receives.
Director of IT
Your 2-Way Street profiling Antelope Valley Hospital CEO Les Wong and CIO Humberto Quintanar was especially interesting [May issue]. Indeed, it is a rare doctor that can afford the time it takes to learn a new technology and then modify it to meet his individual style.
Medical diagnosis is probably the most complex decision that IT supports. One important initiative would be to develop a taxonomy of diagnostic styles from which software engineers could develop toolsets to support medical specialties that could be customized for individual practitioners.
Elton C. "Jeff" O'Byrne
CIO Decisions Conference Kudos
I would like to extend my appreciation for being recognized as one of your 25 Midmarket Leadership Award winners [July issue]. It's an honor to be nominated, much less recognized. It was a great group to be recognized with.
The conference was professional yet personal and relevant to today's issues. There was a nice mix of educational and entertaining presentations. And while it's difficult to get to the meat in a 30-minute presentation, the format kept the program moving along nicely.
Michael J. Lehman
Batteries Plus LLC
I just wanted to say thanks for your team's effort in putting on a great conference here in San Diego. The information was invaluable, and the networking was great. Conferences usually contain a few sections that one might consider "optional," but that wasn't the case with your event.
VP and CIO
New Century Title Co.
This was first published in August 2006