IT Industry Alert: WellPoint Taps Coca-Cola Exec as New CIO

Last week WellPoint announced Thomas Miller, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer at Coca-Cola, will leave his post and join the company as CIO effective May 1st. Miller will replace Andrew Lang, who is now the CIO of Wolters Kluwer.

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Many view this leadership change as a response to a long standing history and reputation for sub-par customer experience at WellPoint. Much of Miller’s time at Coca-Cola was spent working on consumer-facing technologies in the areas of digital marketing, social media and loyalty programs. Sources indicate that the health insurer’s focus will shift to zone in on consumer technology and IT industry customer data insight.

Improved Customer Experience

Miller will be responsible for all information technology initiatives, specifically in regards to secure, cost-effective technologies for WellPoint business capabilities. Likely the focus will be on consumer-facing technologies, more specifically leveraging mobile technologies and analytics to improve communication.

“Technology is integral to the way we do business. It shapes the way we interact with our customers, it allows us to analyze big data in ways we never have before, and it provides us the opportunity to create innovative tools that will help our provider partners make the best health care decisions for their patients. Tom’s in-depth experience in multiple disciplines, including business operations, and his more than 15 years in information technology leadership will allow WellPoint to harness the technologies that are available today, and plan for the groundbreaking technologies of the future,” said Gloria McCarthy, WellPoint’s Chief Administrative Officer.

Miller, regarded as a prized IT industry leader, joined Coca-Cola in 1982 and held a variety of IT roles prior to his most recent role as Chief Information Officer. Miller holds a bachelor’s degree in in Business Management from Northwood University in Midland, Michigan. He also holds an MBA from Goizuta Business School, Emory University. Miller is a charter board member and steering committee member of SAP’s Global Consumer Products Industry Advisory Council (CPAC), a charter board member of the Alliance for Freedom, Restoration & Justice, and was honored in 2010 as a Top Ten visionary Leader by Consumer Goods Technology Magazine.

Looking Toward the Future

As Miller looks towards the future for WellPoint, he will likely be evaluating all current and future practices of the company. This includes infrastructure, storage, information security, enterprise architecture, and ideology, to name a few. As indicated, we believe WellPoint strategically named Miller to help remedy their poor reputation for customer experience. With that said Miller will be expected to overhaul the IT department until their goals have been met. This is where your opportunity lies. If your product or service has a role in this transition, let Miller know.

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McKenzie has a background in communications and non-profit sector. ..read more