SSA on the road to transformation

Tom Hughes, CIO of SSA, had a keynote at the Nortel User Conference, on his perspectives on VoIP and UC. SSA recently signed the largest single VoIP contract valued at $300M, across 64000 employees, 1600 field offices, and a massive contact center; all over 10 years. Tom sees this as putting SSA on the road to UC, a transformational opportunity.

When asked what his big challenges are, he responded: security and helping execs understand the business benefits of UC.

He lamented a common situation that "Lots of execs don't quite get it". He held an informal poll of the audience and observed that only a third indicated that IT was at the business strategy table.

Getting attention of the C suite requires IT to show quantifiable top and bottom-line benefits. That was also the view expressed by Bob Hafner of Gartner, who was on a panel after the keynote. In the case of SSA, they are targeting hundreds of millions of dollars in savings.

My sense from listening to Tom speak, is that 'he's the man' with the right blend of technology and business savvy to move SSA forward.

This is good news for Americans on their own road to retirement (someday!).

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