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August 2006 CIO Decisions Letters to the Editor

Encouraging Problems
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.

Fernando Gonzalez
Byer California
San Francisco

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
Project Manager
HTC Global Services
Troy, Mich.

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.

Jason Inman
Director of IT
TechHealth Inc.
Tampa, Fla.

Getting Technical
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
Campbell University
Jacksonville N.C.

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
Hartland, Wis.

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.

Marvin Stone
VP and CIO
New Century Title Co.
San Diego

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