MIM: 'I now notice the waste in processes sooner'
May 13, 2015
TIAS Master of Information Management taught Suzanne van Zeeland to look at processes at a higher level in the business. "Having attended the program I can now prevent waste in processes underlying the business earlier by opting for a clear 'operating model.'"
Image: © Nationale Beeldbank
Why another study?
“I have always wanted to do a master's degree and, to get a taste of scientific education. I hoped to be able to see my work from a higher level, to develop a helicopter view. I would also like to play a role in the future as a teacher in a HBO (Higher Vocational Education) program – in combination with a position in business – and you need a master's degree for that.
I was looking for a program at the intersection of processes and IT. TIAS offered a flexible program in this area. Because I would only have to attend classes on average two days a month, I did not need to use too many of my leave days."
What was your experience with the program?
"It was fun and it was interesting. The group is united in its motivation. It consists of people who, like you, want to go the extra mile and gain more in-depth knowledge. They work in different sectors and I found that very interesting because I've been working in the same sector for a long time. You hear from your fellow participants how they address issues in other sectors. For example, we had a number of participants from the public sector – very different from the production sector where I work. The lectures were given by highly motivated professors and experts in the areas of strategy, IT innovation and trends, IT outsourcing, enterprise architecture, and also in the field of implementation and change management. The lectures also discussed practical cases that are currently worked on by the participants.
I also found the study week in Boston very useful. In that week we examined the American approach and their view of systems and processes. Because they are different from the Dutch method, I learned a lot there. For example, the way IT Governance is applied there is very different to how it is done in the Netherlands."
Shared services model
What insight do you still use every day?
"I learned to pursue a model in advance. That way, you look at the business at a higher level. I could apply this insight at the company where I work, since we perform the same processes in three different branches. We could apply a shared services model there, and I discussed this approach in one of my papers. Having attended the program I can now prevent waste in processes at the basis of the business earlier by opting for a clear 'operating model.'"
Old business systems
What have you learned from your thesis?
"The assignment consisted of devising an information management strategy for a company in Pakistan. That company had to deal with old business systems, just like many companies in the Netherlands. We adapted their technical infrastructure to a more flexible and secure platform, and we freed up a budget for that. We also added a ‘digital section’ – a vision on how the company should offer digital services by 2020.
I worked on this assignment as part of a group. One of my peers has a lot of detailed technical knowledge and I learned a lot about the technical design of IT infrastructures from that person."
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