By Baselinemag  |  Posted 2007-10-01 Print this article Print
. 3: Cathy Tompkins of Chesapeake Energy">

Chesapeake Energy has become a fixture at the top of the Baseline 500. The oil and gas firm took the lead spot the past two years; this year, its information productivity score jumped almost 200 percentage points.

That wasn't enough to take the top spot overall, but it was enough to top the energy sector, which had the highest median IP score.

CIO Cathy Tompkins says the company has been increasing its IT expenditures. "I honestly felt like we were underspending in IT and understaffed" before last year, she says. "We ramped up in staff to engage and help the company."

Tompkins' IT costs rose as Chesapeake Energy integrated a data warehouse it had built the previous year and consolidated seven different payroll applications in a PeopleSoft system, a project that has carried over into this year. Now, Tompkins is overseeing the development of home-grown applications for customer relationship management aimed at helping the company work with brokers to acquire land leases.

She credits Chesapeake's growing profitability to the company's ability to balance its innovations with the costs necessary to develop them. "We keep reminding ourselves: Let's solve that immediate need with the simplest, most straightforward solution we can," she says.


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