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11 February 2014

CIO interview: Balfour Beatty CIO Danny Reeves on constructing a new bottom line

UK construction company Balfour Beatty’s strategy of growth through acquisition means it now has 15 operating companies. As a result, it inherited lots of independent legacy IT operations. Such diversity and the associated management costs presented a significant challenge to the operational efficiency of the business. It was also having a negative effect on margins in what was an already challenging global economic environment. The breadth of its operations also meant Balfour Beatty could not afford the required level of innovation needed to develop its business. So with the primary motivation for action being necessity, the company transformed its IT and, as a result, its business. The economic case was clear, but the big challenge was always going to be execution. CIO Danny Reeves faced some stark choices – invest heavily “at scale” in IT; get IT off the books by outsourcing the lot in a long-term traditional contract; or find a way to consolidate the number of locations, modernise the IT infrastructure and rationalise the ...

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