The Digital Age Calls for Change
Since 1 April, ŠKODA IT has been operating with a new organisational structure
NEW ŠKODA IT departments
Shopfloor digitisation: Manages smart industrial solutions and connects information technology with production automation – for example, as part of predictive maintenance.
IT project management: The team provides project management, from the idea phase to the deployment of the software and its handover to the FIM department.
Software development: The core of the team’s work is software supply, but broadly speaking, it includes software design, programming and deployment.
Application management: Provides operation of information systems, services, modules, functions, applications, components and interfaces for databases and platforms.
he IT department is an important connecting link that supports the entire carmaker’s operationality. Its new structure better meets the current requirements for IT services and makes it a modern partner that actively contributes to the company’s operations and development and builds relationships with its customers.
When ŠKODA AUTO became part of the VW Group, few people could have imagined how central the IT solutions would be. Thirty years later, however, IT has become as important a pillar as production, technical development and design. The IT department of the Mladá Boleslav carmaker has undergone a significant transformation. It builds on the Accelerate IT strategy created in 2019 and aims to make ŠKODA AUTO a company with top IT competencies (see the November 2019 issue of ŠKODA Mobil). For example, its re-organisation enables it to carry out more projects on its own in a new form and to be proactive in the development of individual IT solutions. And there are many of them. The FI department ensures not only the operation of the carmaker in the form of its computers and software for everyday work but also the development of software solutions for its internal needs, as well as the development and management of services that its customers come into contact with – for example, the carmaker’s website, car configurator and the MyŠKODA mobile application. An extremely important part of IT activities is cybersecurity, which is intertwined with all the aforementioned activities.
The wide scope and creative environment create great conditions for employee development. “We wish to give them the opportunity to improve their skills and become one of the best IT employers in Central Europe”, says Klaus Blüm, Head of the FI – Information Technology department. The restructured IT department represents a professional team focusing on top cooperation with individual users. The goal is to achieve maximum effectiveness, which will lead to financial savings and a quicker deployment of digital products and software solutions. This will positively affect the work of most of the carmaker’s employees and, as a result, improve customer relations as well. ed
New IT Form
On 1 April 2021, the FIB, FIE, FIA and FIV departments ceased to exist, and the FIP, FIM, FID and FII departments were created. This structure enabled the creation of a consistent and standardised IT process consisting of logical steps: Technology Portfolio Management (FIT), Project Delivery Management (FIP), Software Development (FID) and Application Portfolio Management (FIM). The process is maximally supported by services from the other FI departments (FII, FIO, FIG, FIC and FIS), which are responsible for supporting IT services and infrastructure, IT organisation and security, or strengthening the SAP competencies for the VW Group.
You will find the detailed structure on ŠKODA Space.
We are an active partner
Interview with Klaus Blüm, Head of the FI – Information Technology department
KODA AUTO’s IT department is adapting to the rapid changes in the automotive industry as well. The new structure enables it to better respond to the requirements of all the parties and actively participate in the carmaker’s development.
The FI department has been re-organised since 1 April – what were the main reasons for this change?
We understand that IT plays an increasingly important and significant role in our company. In 2019, we developed our Accelerate IT strategy, which defines our four ambitious goals to improve IT and thereby accelerate the transition to a software carmaker. Our new organisation will allow us to be more agile, more flexible, more effective and, most importantly, quicker. We must form and define our new requirements together with our colleagues from the other professional departments, not just respond to them.
What specifically has the re-organisation changed?
We’ve moved from our service department role into an active position. We’ve transformed into an organisation that works together across the carmaker and creates great software solutions together with its partners. Not only thanks to this, ŠKODA IT is respected throughout the entire VW Group.
What do you expect from the new organisational structure? What are the main goals?
We should strive to make our IT at the carmaker operate as a competitive company. By working intensively with our specialist departments, we will be able to deliver quality software solutions at a speed that meets business requirements. This is the only way to become a respected professional partner.
What are the specific benefits of this change for your professional department partners, and how will it affect your regular employees?
Our individual departments may look forward not only to their more intensive cooperation and open communication with us but mainly to receiving support in the implementation of great ideas.
In the Accelerate IT strategy, you presented more than 50 projects last year. What are the next steps?
We will focus even more on process automation and simplification. And also on technologies to support the development of our new digital products and innovations. Another important step will be to update our Accelerate IT strategy in connection with the new NEXT LEVEL ŠKODA programme for the future of the carmaker. ED