HenkKokWelcome to the website of Henk Kok

Essent (2002 - 2011)

What have I done:card-essent

April 2002 - August 2005:

  • in the role of  IT strategist I was a member of a small team that reported and advised directly to the CIO and the Board of Directors. In the first years the Corporate level IT organization was a small supporting team and the accountability for IT was distributed into a number of Business Divisions. In this time-frame I started working on the simplification, standardization and central approach to IT. This eventually lead to a new centralized IT Organization with a 'multi vendor' sourcing policy for Application and Infrastructure services. My personal contribution was focused on: IT Architecture, Business/IT alignment, Services Portfolio management and Project Portfolio management. 

August 2005 - March 2006:

  • as the manager the 'Planning & Control' organization and member of the CIO Management Team, I was responsible for all 'staff', consultancy and architectural activities in the organization. I managed a team of roughly 60 persons.

March 2006 - December 2010:

  • as 'Principal Architect' I was a member of the CIO Office team. I was involved in definition, implementation and maintaining all IT policies, where the 'Sourcing' policy  and the SAP policy played the most important role. In this respect I represented Essent in the 'Advisory Customer Counsel for Utilities (ACCU)' of the SAP company.
  • my 'final job' was the preparation of the merger of Essent with RWE with regard to IT, which made my position in the company obsolete, so I went for an early retirement.

What have I learned:

A few hard lessons:

  • apparently external consultancy is always better than listening to your own employees. More specifically when this external consultancy is very expensive.
  • 'responsibility' is not just a task but most importantly a feeling. Where responsibility is not felt, the result will be chaos.
  • as long as somebody can get away with a reasonable explanation of 'why he/she did not deliver on promises', there will be no real improvement.
  • advice is by definition something that is not needed to be followed up upon. Unsolicited advice is not appreciated.