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24 Information Technology Systems at AirportsA Primer Table 2-6. Typical key performance metrics and measures. In Table 2-6, time spent per work order is a financial metric that directly affects the bottom line. This 20% reduction in average labor per work order will get the CFO's focus. Measuring the hours per work order reduction requires actually measuring the work hours performed. Most airports measure the work hours of maintenance staff, but often that is a pay- roll function and the work hours for each ticket may not be counted. Efforts must be made to ensure that metrics are collected to measure the benefits achieved. Establishing an expected benefit and checking that it has been realized is important in deter- mining a project's success. 2.4 CEOStakeholder Communication It may seem unnecessary to discuss CEOstakeholder communication because interactions between these two parties do not typically involve IT. However, IT is necessary for stakeholders to perform their work, and thus the subject of IT will invariably come up at some point between CEOs and stakeholders. However, one cannot discuss IT-related communication between CEOs and stakeholders without focusing squarely on the CIO, who plays a critical role in putting IT systems in place. CEOs and stakeholders should make an effort to engage in regular conversa- tions about IT and to include CIOs in the discussions, whether through regular meetings or in formal reviews. It's also important to ensure that stakeholders contribute to airport and IT mas- ter plans to be sure their needs and expectations for IT are addressed. The perspectives of the CEO and stakeholders are represented in Table 2-7. The perspectives discussed so far in this section lead to common communication challenges regarding IT between the CEO and stakeholder executives. These challenges and suggested solu- tions are discussed in more detail in the following.

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The IT Communication Triangle--Solving IT Issues 25 Table 2-7. CEOstakeholder perspectives. 2.4.1 Challenge: Competition for Limited Capital Resources IT projects, like most other airport projects, must compete for limited funding. It is very dif- ficult to compare the "apples" of renovating a building versus the "oranges" of implementing a new server architecture. CIOs and stakeholders each have valid reasons for promoting their proj- ect ideas, but that doesn't change the CEO's reality of limited capital funding. This is further complicated by the fact that everything isn't always based on ROI. Airports are heavily regulated and often subject to making capital improvements for compliance rather than economic purposes. Solution: Use Uniform Project Evaluation Airports that are demonstrating best practices in this area have developed a uniform project scoring/evaluation form. This summary identifies the high-level financial value, compliance, strategic value, and risks associated with a project. A weighting system allows the airport to adjust the relative importance of certain factors over time and yet evaluate all projects using the same criteria. If used for all projects (not just IT projects), these normalizing schemes allow management to rank projects in a consistent fashion. CEOs can use this technique to socialize project value amongst all stakeholders (including the CIO). An added benefit of this approach is that stakeholders can self-score their projects and find ways to enhance their value, perhaps through collaboration with one another. See Figure 5-2 for a sample scoring sheet. 2.4.2 Challenge: Managing Impacts of IT Projects on Stakeholder Staff Most information technology projects do not happen in isolation. Stakeholders sometimes complain that change in information technology systems affects their operations in unintended ways. Typical impacts on stakeholder departments are:

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26 Information Technology Systems at AirportsA Primer Additional information that now has to be entered to make an IT system effective. The meaning of some data elements has to change slightly so that all departments use it the same way. Additional training is required so that staff can properly use the system and thus get the desired benefits. New data security protocols need to be followed for IT systems. Solution: CEOs Should Encourage Partnership with CIOs Earlier sections have focused on the importance of the CIOstakeholder partnership, and it is only through this partnership that unintended consequences of IT projects can be identified and mitigated. However, it is not entirely the CIO's responsibility to make this happen. The CEO needs to foster an environment at the airport where stakeholders are expected to par- ticipate in the development of IT projects and CIOs are expected to be actively engaged in stake- holder projects. This can be achieved through a number of communication-enabling methods: CEOs can require stakeholders to attend regular status meetings that cover IT as well as other programs. CEOs can require stakeholders to involve CIOs in their regular status meetings. CEOs can invite CIOs to the executive management meetings. The situation at each airport and the readiness of some CIOs to handle executive responsibil- ities may determine which of these approaches will work for a given airport. However, setting a corporate expectation that good communication occur with IT is the responsibility of the CEO. As projects approach the funding stage, CEOs should ask stakeholders if they have been engaged in the development of the concept of operations and value proposition and if they believe that all of their staff training and operational impacts have been considered. 2.4.3 Challenge: IT Affects Stakeholder Budgets IT projects can often have operational impacts on stakeholder organizations and their budg- ets. Examples of such impacts are: Increased labor cost due to revised business processes or new data-entry demands. Decreased labor costs due to efficiencies gained by the IT system. Retirement of operational costs of existing non-IT systems. Bumps in labor cost due to project involvement and training. Increased operational costs due to ongoing training. These often unforeseen costs can leave stakeholders frustrated with IT systems and under- staffed to perform their primary function. Solution: Use the Budget Process to Incorporate Changes As stakeholders and CEOs negotiate their budgets, stakeholders should look back to value propositions as tacit executive approval for increased staffing. During the project formulation phase, as value propositions and concepts of operation are developed, there are implied impacts to stakeholder budgets. Stakeholders should refer back to these documents to justify to CEOs any changes in head count and other operational costs related to the execution of IT projects. The reverse is also true. CEOs should use agreements formed with stakeholders during proj- ect formulation to reduce budgets based on efficiencies promised by deployment of information technology. Surprisingly, this follow-up step is rarely done, and savings go unrealized.

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The IT Communication Triangle--Solving IT Issues 27 2.4.4 Challenge: Airport Language Is Not Always Well Understood The language of airports is unique. CEOs and stakeholders may be fluent in airport terminol- ogy and jargon, but for CIOs, who often come to aviation from an outside industry, the language of airports and the details of how airports are run may pose a challenge. For example, the way that rates and charges are set is complex, and the influences on IT from the governing organiza- tion may be new to a CIO transplanted from private enterprise. For that matter, the terminology used in the development of a terminal is different from that used in the development of IT. Table 2-8 provides simple examples showing the different names given to the stages of project development for a facility versus an IT system. It's easy to see how IT professionals who are not familiar with airport terminology and how airport personnel who are not familiar with IT terminology can be misunderstood. Solution: Help the CIO Understand the Business Model Early in this chapter, a key message delivered to CIOs was to find a common language with which to speak with the CEO and stakeholders. This same solution applies to CEOs and stake- holders, who must help CIOs understand both the terminology and the business model of air- ports. The better the CIO understands the business model, the better he or she will be able to speak in terms that are understood by everyone on the team and to contribute IT solutions that offer business benefits. 2.4.5 Challenge: The CIO Must Be Positioned Effectively in the Organization Because IT is so important within airports, the prime advocate for IT needs to have good access to executive management, specifically the CEO. Research for this primer reveals that CIOs are not reliably in the same organizational department across airports. Data show that CIOs report to the CEO less than half the time. This limits the IT department's ability to communicate effec- tively and can contribute to some of the other communication issues identified in this primer, including challenges that CEOs and stakeholders encounter when they are discussing IT. Solution: CIOs Need to Be Senior Executives Providing CIOs with a level of authority that gives them good access to the CEO and other mem- bers of the executive management team is a successful approach to bridging communication gaps. Table 2-8. Language comparison for buildings and computer systems.

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28 Information Technology Systems at AirportsA Primer It recognizes that IT is essential to successfully operating the airport and takes into account the role IT plays in every aspect of the airport. The most direct means for granting access and authority is to promote the CIO to an execu- tive position. The CIO's activities can be refocused to a higher level, and a senior IT manager can take responsibility for the IT department's daily operations and activities. In this way, when the CEO and stakeholder are discussing IT matters, the CIO can bring an executive perspective to the table. If such a change is not practical or possible within the airport's structure, the CIO should at least have a direct means of access to the CEO to ensure that the CEO has a full and complete understanding of the high-level issues, operations, and plans for IT at the airport.