Lori Beer can talk technology as well as any IT staffer. While rising through the ranks to executive vice president and CIO at insurance giant WellPoint, she could dive into any discussion about software development or hardware standards. But her job demands more than technical savvy. Accordingly, she has moulded her skills and those of her top team to help WellPoint achieve its business strategy—redefining how the company interacts with hospitals, doctors and patients in the new era of healthcare.
“We are accountable for making our products and services real,” says Beer, who in October was promoted to executive vice president of WellPoint’s new Enterprise Business Services organization (the group includes IT and the CIO now reports to her). Under the terms of the recent healthcare reform, individuals will be more involved in decisions about their care than ever before, Beer believes. The CIO’s job is to “connect all those dots to determine how we effectively balance managing risk as a company with bringing new consumer-facing capabilities to the table.”
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