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IT alignment with business strategy adds value to customer experience

CUNA Mutual Group in Madison, Wis., adds value to its customers' experiences, thanks to its focus on IT alignment with business strategy and on tactical partnerships between departments.

In this video, filmed at the Fusion 2012 CEO-CIO Symposium in Madison, Site Editor Wendy Schuchart sits down with Rick Roy, senior vice president and CIO at CUNA, to discuss how he's promoting IT alignment with the business, with the ultimate goal of satisfying clients.

At CUNA, cooperation and partnerships among the company's many departments are not an option -- they're a requirement. Those synergies allow CUNA to best attend to its customers' experiences, with the IT department serving up mobile applications that facilitate better transactions and bring even more paying customers into the fold.

Read a partial transcript from this interview below, and watch the video to learn more about how Roy encourages IT alignment with business goals to add value to customers' experiences.

Wendy Schuchart: Tell me a little bit about how you're using technology to serve the business strategy.

Rick Roy:
We're really using technology to enable the business strategies we have in our various business lines and product areas. We do that two ways. One is to use technology to enable employees to work better, faster, smarter, more collaboratively. That's more of an internal view.

The external view, the outside-in view, is how can we use technology, like some of the mobile technology today, to actually serve up our products on the mobile devices for the actual consumer? We have examples of both. One is more of an internal productivity play, and the other is [to] serve up an app, available via your Droid or iPhone, to a consumer that helps them through a transaction -- and, by the way, helps them buy one of our insurance products in a more seamless way.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Wendy Schuchart, Site Editor. For midmarket IT news and updates throughout the week, follow us on Twitter @ciomidmarket.

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I'm afraid I don't see these examples as alignment with the business. Better, Faster, Cheaper is the mantra of everyone - it is just more value for the IT spend. Creating products for customers is enabling the business and creating new product lines, sure, but is it "alignment?"

Perhaps we should be talking about what alignment means, then looking for it! :-)
That's an excellent point, Matt. Every company uses it's IT department to create business value. This isn't really a very concrete example of alignment.

To me, alignment means that all of the executives driving the business decisions, as well as the IT department, and any internal departments that IT is providing value for, are all on the same page with a mutual understanding of goals.