Aggregate Industries CIO Mike Gibbons has introduced tools to increase collaboration and force visibility of key information. By making information easy and instant, it has changed employee behaviour and how the company works with its customers.

When did you start your current role?
2007.

What is your reporting line?
CFO and deputy CEO.

Do you meet with and discuss business strategy with the CEO every week?
Monthly.

Are you a member of the board of directors?
No.

What other executive boards do you sit on?
Exco and regional management teams.

Does your organisation have a CDO?
No.

What non-technology responsibilities do you have in the organisation?
Process improvement and innovation process.

How many employees does your organisation have?
4,000.

Does your organisation carry out significant trade in the EU?
Yes.

How many users does your department supply services to?
4,000.

How do you ensure that you have a good understanding of your business and how your customers use your business's products?
Close relationships have been forged with operational heads and their respective organisations. I regularly meet and speak external customers.

Aggregate Industries technology strategy and agenda

Is your organisation being disrupted by the internet, mobility or technology-oriented start-ups?
Yes.

Are you empowered by your organisation to disrupt from the inside?
Yes.

Describe a disruptive measure you’ve led or played a major part in
Introduced Google enterprise tools to increase collaboration and force visibility of key information.

What major transformation project has been recently completed or is under way at your organisation?
The Google enterprise project has been transformational in the way it has changed internal user behaviour and how we collaborate with our customers.

What impact will the above transformation have on your organisation?
It has made the sharing of information easy and instant. At the same time there has been a collaboration initiative to encourage the business to work closer together both internally and with customers and suppliers.

How has your leadership style contributed to the outcomes of the transformation project?
I have very good relationships with key business leaders. This was fundamental to getting buy-in and acceptance. The work has continued with Google to extract maximum value from the Google toolset in particular hangouts, drive and sites.

What key technologies do you consider enable transformation?
Advances in mobility and app delivery, cloud services, in-memory tools like QlikView and Anaplan, and integration platforms like Talend.

Are you increasing the number of cloud applications or infrastructure in use at your organisation?
Yes.

What is your information and data analytics vision for the organisation?
We have been big users of Qlikview for the past four years  it has underpinned our BI strategy. We have been moving to easy-to-use/deploy software that utilises in-memory technology for the rapid processing of large data volumes. Our strategy is also to move to self-service for the creation of data views under a framework of clearly identified data labels.

How is mobile and social networking impacting operations and customer experience?
The creation of a mobility strategy and platform has been key to the planned agile delivery of apps planned for 2015. The reality is we do not know exactly what we will deliver but we predict the demand will be high, with expectations of rapid deployment. Key considerations will be the distinction of mode A and mode B teams to keep both capabilities (agile and traditional as options).

Describe your strategic vision towards shadow IT and BYOD. How do you influence and engage executives and employees around choice?
Shadow IT prototyping has not been outlawed or discouraged. However, we have moved towards a structure that can provide easy links from the business to IT that can recognise the need and help deploy rapid solutions. This is particularly apparent with the mobility strategy and capability, and the agile approach introduced in 2013.

What strategic technology deals have been struck and with whom?
We are currently in the final negotiation of a deal with Vodafone to deliver services and innovative solutions from Vodafone. This is not straightforward and will take a year's worth of transition to accomplish.

Who are your main suppliers?
Vodafone, BT, IBM and Oracle.

Aggregate Industries IT security and budget

Has your organisation detected a cyber intrusion in the last 12 months?
Yes.

Has cyber-security risen up your management agenda?
Yes.

Does your organisation understand the potential cyber-security threats it faces?
Yes.

Has this led to an increase in your security budget?
Yes.

What is the IT budget?
£12m.

How much is the IT operational spend compared to the revenue as a percentage?
1%.

What is the strategic aim of the CIO and IT operations for the next financial year?
To develop the business strategy and recognise the digital opportunities. To seek out new technologies for deployment within the organisation. To understand the technology projects under way in our key customers. To establish networks with technologists and transformation CIOs both within and outside of our sector. To develop the mobility capability of the organisation. To do the basics to an excellent level. To build a team that perform and sustain the above.

Are you finding it difficult to recruit the talent you need to drive transformation?
Yes.

Has recruitment and retention risen up your agenda as a CIO?
Yes.

Are you looking for recruits in the EU to fill the skills shortage you have?
Yes.

Does your IT organisation operate an apprenticeship scheme?
Yes.

Aggregate Industries technology department

How would you describe your leadership style?
Collaborative, social, assertive, persuasive, open.

Explain how you’ve supported and developed your senior leadership team to support your overall objectives and vision
Open and collaborative. I've encouraged networking and relationship building. A formal structure is in place for appraisals and development plans. I encourage strategic thinking and succession planning.

How many employees are in your IT team?
70.

What is the split between in-house/outsourced staff?
90/10.

Does your team include key skilled workers from the EU?
Yes.