MassMutual Reinvents Its IT OrganizationBy Eileen Feretic | Posted 2013-03-21 Print
Charged with leading Massachusetts Mutual 's IT modernization program, CIO Bob Casale began reimagining the organization from top to bottom.
As part of these initiatives, the organization created half a dozen IT "Communities of Practice." These teams share stories and ideas; determine whether processes are working and, if they're not, come up with ways to improve them; and develop ways to institutionalize processes that do work.
"We picked people to lead the communities, and they gathered the rest of the team, including our line-of-business partners," Casale says. "The communities come up with suggestions and send them to our leadership. These communities are the sustaining force behind change management, and they ensure that we don't backslide into old behaviors."
Though still in the final year of the program, the IT organization has made significant improvements. For one thing, it has achieved an 18 percent reduction in IT costs and a 9 percent improvement in the ability to deliver projects on time and on budget, while giving internal customers exactly what they are expecting.
These internal users now pay only for what they use: a consumption-based approach. "We are the front end," Casale says. "Users tell us what they need, and we find the best solutions to fit those needs."
IT also has achieved a 10 percent reduction in legacy applications. "We constantly prune the garden and replace legacy systems with new technologies," he explains. "It's part of an annual technology planning process. For each technology, we decide whether to buy, hold or sell."
For their core Universal Life Products, IT was able to reduce the product development life cycle by nine months, with an 84 percent reduction in costs. The rules-based process has potential for use in other groups within MassMutual.
"We created a scale that we didn't have before," Casale says, "and the process is standard and repeatable. The way we run IT now enables us to achieve that. It gives us the headroom for innovation, so we can implement emerging technologies like cloud, mobility and big data."
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