“Information is power.” Who knows who first said it, but everyone in business knows it to be true. As a result, business leaders constantly seek better information to give them competitive edge and help them manage their businesses. With the maturing of the Information Age, data is generated in volumes that were all but inconceivable just a few short years ago. Internal systems, vendor systems, telephone systems and the Web generate data at dizzying speeds. The challenge is to turn the data into the information that companies can use and leaders seek.
In a company like General Motors, much of that responsibility falls in the hands of its IT department. Working with those systems and volumes of data requires a constant focus on deriving more quality information from them and building innovative new solutions. Recognizing the company’s needs, GM IT has already opened two Innovation Centers (with two more to come) to gather the brightest minds together to build these solutions. Those minds will need to have broad knowledge of business principles, the ability to see connections between work that exists in different business areas, and the creativity and motivation to deliver capabilities
Many companies, including GM, see those skills being developed in universities across the land. Exposure to the many business disciplines combined with the critical focus on information systems concepts creates the type of key talent that GM seeks to bring into their Innovation Centers. For GM, innovation is how IT supports the business in rolling out the best vehicles and enabling the best performance. Partnering with top universities to train and recruit the best students is one key way in which GM IT will ensure success in its mission to increase the focus on IT innovation.