The Business of IT: Building the Bridge

As a senior program manager in IST’s Project Management Office, Terry Harris is working on three projects: the PeopleSoft HCM upgrade, selecting and implementing a planning and budgeting solution, and implementing an enterprise data warehouse solution. And as “each one is at a different stage, [his] role is slightly different” for each of them; however, the projects all “have a cross-campus application” and all challenge Terry “to keep track of where things are at and what needs to be done next” as he helps build the “bridge between business and IT” processes. Although Terry’s background is largely in HR—he graduated from the University of Calgary with a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Human Resources—in “every job [he] had there was always a small systems component to it and as not everybody was into computers back then [he] usually ended up getting the assignment”. Working on several PeopleSoft projects, as well as obtaining his Project Management Professional designation, also has given him insight into managing his current IST projects. Terry feels that the most important part of his job is being able “to develop relationships and to speak the language of the business side”. And, his creed of “being personable, being approachable and being available” to all the stakeholders involved will prove to be, perhaps, the key to completing the bridge between IT and business processes at the University.

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