By Sramana Mitra and guest author Shaloo Shalini
SM: What is the scope of your IT organization at Verizon that services the enterprise business?
JS: By scope, do you mean the size or the things?
SM: Size or anything that gives us some idea of the scope of IT management at Verizon.
JS: Right. The IT organization I am responsible for is several thousand people strong. We are a global organization, so we have people in many countries. We have IT professionals in the UK, Germany, Asia-Pacific, India, and Argentina. Also, there are a few smaller locations of Verizon based in Australia, France, and so on. We are a globally integrated IT organization. The scope of our responsibility is the design, development, and delivery and production support for all of the company. We deal with the IT support required right from the pre-order sales stage – pricing, quoting – through to ordering, provisioning, service management, service delivery, the full value chain all the way down to surveillance and network management, field support, and so on. This includes all of the soup-to-nuts services that we offer our enterprise and wholesale customers. So, we design and develop software. We are a very large software development organization. We deliver and then support and manage all of the applications required within Verizon.
In addition, we do the product development and support of those two lines of business. The larger picture at Verizon is that we also support a very large consumer population. Of course, we have a large and very well-known wireless company, and those organizations have their own CIOs who have a similar function but for the user populations they support. We have a centralized data center operation that services all of the CIO organizations I mentioned. We have centralized data center support and all of the associated functions in those data centers, such as security, network management, help desk, architecture, and so on. That suite of organization supports not only my organization but the ones that service Facebook consumers and wireless.
SM: How big is the Verizon Enterprise business? How many customers do you have? What is the revenue level you support?
JS: Let me provide to you that separately, if you don’t mind.
SM: Sure. I am looking for a range so that I can drive the rest of this conversation accordingly, that is all. Let me ask you another major question: What is your philosophy in terms of driving a cloud computing strategy at Verizon?
JS: Well, I am sure you are aware of this, but I think it is important to note that unlike some of the other CIOs that you may be talking to, I have a perspective that covers both the internal IT organization – what is our thinking on cloud computing to support our own internal operations – and the Verizon business as a provider of such services. Verizon as a business entity is in the business of deploying cloud computing services today.
SM: That’s why I was asking how many enterprise customers you have; I knew you were going to bring this up. I knew that we were going to talk about how you support the delivery infrastructure to that enterprise customer base.
JS: In terms of our cloud computing strategy, I assume you are referring to what I think about cloud computing in terms of internal IT operations at Verizon and not what is our Verizon business enterprise cloud computing strategy, right?
We are in a complicated business and there are a lot of new answers to the question, so for now I will just give it a shot, OK?
JS: As a very large enterprise, we run what we believe are some of the, if not the, most highly efficient data center operations on the planet. We have done a lot of benchmarking of that, and regardless of whether it is the most efficient or among the most efficient data center operations worldwide, we are in a class of companies that would say similar things. As for cloud computing, I will give you a bit of my perspective on cloud computing. Is that OK?