When Pradeep Mannakkara took the post of CIO at language-learning software company Rosetta Stone Inc. in 2011, among his main goals were to shift its aging infrastructure to cloud-based platforms and introduce mobile applications.
Mannakkara, who previously held senior IT posts in companies such as AOL Inc., Visa Inc., and online technology publication CNET.com, said he encountered IT infrastructure at Rosetta Stone that was almost as old as the 21-year-old company itself.
To increase the strategic value of the IT organization and get everyone onboard on the push towards efficiency and innovation, Mannakkara said it was important to produce some immediate wins.
In a question and answer article in the online technology publication Computerworld.com, he discusses some of those wins and the challenges he and his team encountered.
Mannakkara said one of his earliest moves was to determine what would help the company grow its revenues and reorganize the team. Rosetta Stone had a structure that was called Build or Run which he said was “not effective for articulating roles and responsibilities.”
The solution was to create departments more aligned with technology functions. For instance, today Rosetta Stone has a data services function and a Web engineering function. The company’s corporate systems function, said Mannakkara, was separated into a business intelligence function and an enterprise architect function.
Each function needed to identify their customers in order to create a “clear line and accountability,” he said.
His next big move was to shift Rosetta Stone’s infrastructure to the cloud.
In April last year, Rosetta Stone replaced Microsoft Outlook and moved to Google for email and app storage.
Mannakkara also noticed that some of Rosetta Stone’s remote workers and marketing personnel were using Dropbox to share corporate files. To protect intellectual property, his team began to shop around for a corporate file sharing solution.
The team is now pushing Box secure content-sharing cloud application because it’s easy for IT to manage and allows users to work from anywhere.
Password resets were the biggest ticket items at the help desk so the company began using Okta Inc.’s cloud-based identity management service for single sign-on capabilities.