On Wednesday, we hosted a Virtual Think IT Panel that was an open topic session. Attendees were able to pose any relevant IT/business-related questions to our esteemed panelists. A huge thank you to our panelists, Jim Graham, VP of Application Development at Prime Therapeutics, Bill Trubeck, Vice President, IT Services and Portfolio Management at Abbott, and Teddy Bekele, Chief Technology Officer at Land O’ Lakes for sharing their knowledge and experience

Below you will find an overview of the most popular questions from our members and a summary of what was discussed. 

What are some creative/alternative ways to get a diverse set of employees in the organization? 

The main aspect of an organization is its company culture. The leadership in the company represents the culture and what employees can expect. There are also many different recruiting channels that companies can use. Companies, on the other side, must attract diverse talent as well. This goes back to company culture and what they believe in. The panelists agreed that you must believe in a diverse culture and make it a priority in your company. 

Can you offer your perspective on the shift from project to product model? 

The shift doesn’t need to have a mature start, but companies should understand how they want to start. You should focus on cost savings and not spending the funds. The shift from project to product takes a lot of prioritizing. It also comes with understanding changes that are moving in and improving the amount of code on a rapid basis. To get to a faster speed, teams must work collaboratively. This comes to the company culture as a whole rather than just IT.  Companies can see the benefits but can’t always see the downside until a couple of years out. 

How do you ensure that the projects/investments IT takes on drive value and connects to the company strategy? 

To ensure that projects that IT takes on are connecting to the company strategy, leaders need to draw boundaries around the strategy. This makes it so that IT and the business side of things are on the same page. When an approach was made, but projects weren’t seeing it through, leaders went back to discuss the strategy. Projects need to be aligned with business strategies, visions, and missions.  

We have heard all about the far-reaching impacts of COVID in the short run. What will be the long-lasting change in the technology world in the long term? 

The IT industry is going to come and go, but it will always drive business. There will be a lot more remote teams being made, which makes it hard to build company culture from home. At this moment, companies are making things work, but it is hard to know how this will affect the long-term outcome. Teams are working effectively now, which is why it’s working. COVID has also allowed companies to get new technology, business models.  

In businesses, the IT side of things needs to be right first. Empowered teams will take the projects and make them work. This allows all sides of the business to run accordingly. Thank you to everyone who joined us for the event!