The Power of a Healthy CFO-CIO Partnership

For CFO Jim Lusk, IT is essential to ABM’s smooth operations and happy customers.

For CFO Jim Lusk, IT is essential to ABM's smooth operations and happy customers.

What impact is technology having on ABM?

One of the key ways we drive ABM's results is through great operations. We're a company with more than 100,000 employees, and we perform our services in more than 45,000 buildings in the U.S. and internationally. Since employees are our cost of goods sold, workforce management is a huge part of our operations.

We recently embarked on a plan to get our employees on a common time-reporting system--many use thumbprints to punch in and out of biometric clocks. Now, if we run a lot of overtime the first week of a month, we can use simple algorithms to project those costs. Rather than wait to get reports at the end of the month, we can start attacking labor costs as soon as we know there's an issue.

How do you ensure that a great idea like biometric clocks turns into a real application?

We always start with strategy and how much risk we are willing to take. Then our process management organization (PMO), which includes representatives from the entire company, prioritizes the big projects. If there is an issue like time reporting and the PMO thinks we have a good technology solution, we'll do a pilot.

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