Our leadership team has viewed the downturn as an opportunity to invest. As a member of the executive committee, I was in a position to sell the idea of investing in process improvements to drive out costs, which will bring us, when the economy recovers, to an upside that is huge instead of just marginal.
It’s hard to ask to invest, no matter the condition of the economy, but when the people at the top are facing hard choices, you can’t just walk in and ask for a multiyear, multimillion dollar investment of new money without their trust and understanding. To do this investment right, we worked especially closely with the business to develop a road map. We held two multiday workshops with our top 37 executives and the CEO to gather their input and to collectively prioritize every improvement to the business, including those that aren’t IT-driven initiatives. We’re already seeing a huge improvement in processes and decision making thanks to our push to move to a global ERPERP, which creates a new level of confidence in IT and positions the company far better for the future. Alles zu ERP auf CIO.de
As a company, we spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year to find oil and get it out of the ground, and since none of our competitors are standing still, that level of investment is not likely to change. So our value focus has turned to using IT to improve the quality of purchasing decisions. By bringing planning and approval of all IT spend under one process across the global enterprise, we will be operating at a far higher level as the markets change.
Right now, we are piloting this process within my group, the Enterprise Function IT Team. But each business unit has its own CIO, and shifting all their mind-sets is a real culture change – we are looking to move thousands of people from an environment where everybody was allowed to buy whatever they wanted to one where we are evaluating all purchasing in terms of value to the whole. We are developing a dashboard that will gather this information and allow executives at all levels to make value-based decisions and see the advantages of working together to leverage Chevron’s size and knowledge, rather than planning independently.