Fostering Collaboration Through Information Technology

A Q&A with Chris Perretta, Chief Information Officer

June 2014

Q: Information technology (IT) at State Street has been undergoing a major transformation since 2010. How is this initiative making the company a better partner to clients?

A: We’re working more closely than ever with our business units and using their client insight to enhance our IT solutions. And we’ve already seen benefits for our clients. By automating processes, we now provide more real-time data and offer greater risk management across portfolios. We’ve also improved our own infrastructure, which creates more operating efficiencies and enhances security.

Q: How has the IT transformation impacted employees?
A: Our focus on collaboration means we need people who know how to talk to clients and have the right skills to translate their needs into solutions. Today, employees must bring depth and breadth to their roles. I call this “go wide, go deep.” This means changes to current roles, creating new roles and eliminating roles that may not fit in our current model. We’re also looking at best practices outside the financial services field, like manufacturing, to inform how we build our teams and collaborate internally. The greatest challenge is finding enough people with the engineering skills we need. I think many companies are grappling with a skills gap.

Q: What’s next for the IT transformation?
A: We’re scheduled to complete the initiative in 2014, but we’ll continue to evolve and innovate. We have to. IT is at the heart of the products and services we sell. We’ve learned a great deal during this transformation and we know there’s still much more to do.

Our next wave of technology at State Street will be an enterprise-wide initiative we’re calling The Digital Enterprise. It’s designed to enable greater straight-through processing and link information and workflows — creating a digital information environment and automating many manual processes. It uses state-of-art computing methods that will allow us to bring powerful new tools to our clients, faster than ever, with a higher level of reliability and performance.

Christopher Perretta is Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer