Embracing Change for a Promising Future

Cathie Kozik, CIO, PSAV
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Cathie Kozik, CIO, PSAV

Cathie Kozik, CIO, PSAV

Back in my first role as CIO,I quickly realized that my role was to implement technology that enabled our business to accomplish ourmarket goals flawlessly. This called for leadership in IT to think as a business person first and a technologist second. Presently, as the CIO of PSAV, myaim is to support our company vision of connecting and inspiring people:enabling our team members to support our customers in connecting with their audiences, and enablingPSAV leadership to seamlessly connect with and inspire our employees.

In the event services sector, every moment counts and there are no second chances to be perfect, so we deploy innovative tools and technologies for efficient and flawless service delivery. It is crucial to ensure that our environment supports the field perfectly, which requires an end-to-end understanding of our users and our customers, and the right tools to meet their needs. To truly connect with our customers, we need tools in the field that remember our customers as their events move around the globe.  Our firm leverages Microsoft Dynamics as ourCRM system to ensure we have that history at our fingertips. We use an internally developed .NET-based application to assist the technicians and the in-field team membersto be more efficient in service delivery by providing access to the right information at the right time. With more than 90 percent of our employees being customer facing, ensuring that they have the right skills to serve our customers is critical.  Our Learning and Development team has worked with a partner to createPSAV University, which provides training, learning academies and career path information forourtechnicians. Overall, our investment in targeted application environments, matched to our business vision, haselevated our overallability to serve our customers effectively. 

  The work culture contributes a lot to the outcome, and hereat PSAV, we have a very collaborative environment with an optimistic approach toward change  

To incorporate technology seamlessly in our work, we useservices from a few key vendors in conjunction with our own highly skilled developers. Ourvendors work closely with us, spending time to understand the time-critical environment of our industryand the need to get it right the first time. We also work with numerous traditional IT suppliers to provide insights on identifying untapped opportunities where their technology can help us be more effective.

To make sure the IT team understands how our tools can help our sales teams and field operations organization, we require allPSAV IT team members to work along with the technicians once a year, regardless of their role in the organization. Doing so helps us understand the problems faced by the technicians and the field workers, which also provides insight into important upgrades we can apply to our applications to better serve the business.

At PSAV, we have a very collaborative and transparent environment with an optimistic approach toward change, which makes it easier to deploy process and application changes.  As we re-emphasize the importance of being on the customer’s journey, embracing change and seeing the world through new business lenses will continue to be important.

With 16 years’ experience as a senior Information Technology leader for various businesses, the most important thing I have learned is that the business results are far more important than the technology used.  The end business result and the user experienceshould be the center of all the solutions and actions we take. Having a deep understanding of the business, its challenges, and its culture should drive everything the IT organization takes on.

On a personal note, my suggestion to aspiring CIOs and IT leaders is to absorb and embrace the disruption occurring in all aspects of your business and industry. As change is the only constant, leadersshould embraceit for a promising future.

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