CIO Values: Donald H. Hopkins, SunGard Availability Services

The United States isn't graduating enough science, technology, engineering, and math talent to meet future needs, Hopkins says.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

December 19, 2008

3 Min Read

Career Track

DONALD H. HOPKINSVIP and CIO SunGard Availability Services

How long at current company: Seven months. Before that, I was with NCR for 29 years.

Career accomplishment I'm mot proud of: As the CIO of NCR, successfully completing the very complex IT spin-off of Teradata as a separate company in a very aggressive timeframe (less than nine months) while coming in under planned budgets for the initiative, both before and after the spin-off.

Most important career influencer: I was fortunate to have two bosses that provided real mentorship at NCR. The first, Dan Beatty, helped me map out a career path that would ensure diversity in my IT experience (e.g., manufacturing, sales, international), while the second, Eric Berg (now my manager at SunGard), helped me transition into a more executive role at NCR as CIO.

Decision I wish I could do over: While I feel good about the diversity of my IT career, earlier in my career, I should have found an opportunity to actually work in the business for a period of time.


The next big thing for my business will be ... The software-as-a-service phenomenon is developing as the way to deploy software solutions in the 21st century. This will be the deployment option of choice for most small and midsize businesses.

View on offshore outsourcing: In the future, the only reason for global sourcing will not be cost, but the search for talent. The United States simply isn't graduating enough science, technology, engineering, and mathematical talent to fuel our needs for innovation in the coming decades.

On The Job

IT budget (approximate): $19 million

Size of IT team: 160

Top three initiatives:

  • Implementing an enterprise data warehouse from Teradata.

  • Migrating the current Oracle ERP platform to release 12, and simplifying processes to let us be much quicker in responding to customer needs.

  • Migrating our disaster recovery to more advanced disk-based technology to ensure we're a good business model for our recovery services business

How I measure IT effectiveness: Since IT is primarily a service provider, the most critical metrics are those that measure the IT organization's performance against its published service-level agreements.


Colleges/degrees: BA in math and physics from Miami University; master's degrees in math, school administration, computer science, and business administration from University of Dayton

Leisure activity: Travel

Best book read recently: Hot, Flat, And Crowded, by Thomas L. Friedman

If I weren't a CIO, I'd be ... a college professor

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