DETROIT, March 6 General Motors Co will
open a fourth U.S. information technology center as part of its
plan to bring that work in-house and improve the automaker's
efficiency and productivity.
GM said on Wednesday it would hire 1,000 people, including
software developers, database experts and business analysts, to
staff the center near Phoenix, Arizona. It will be the last of
the four centers in the United States GM previously said it
Last summer, GM, a pioneer in outsourcing information
technology, said it would reverse that trend with plans to
expand vastly the number of in-house IT experts over three
At the time of the announcement, GM outsourced some 90
percent of its IT services and provided 10 percent of that work
in-house, an approach that had been the model at the Detroit
company for most of the last three decades. The U.S. automaker
said it planned to flip those percentages.
"We're actually ahead on the (IT) innovation centers," GM
Chief Information Officer Randy Mott said on a conference call.
"It doesn't mean that we don't still have a long way to go
because we do, but these are kind of the key ingredients to
allow us to do that."
In January, GM said it would open a third center near
Atlanta, joining Austin, Texas, and Warren, Michigan, as part of
the company's strategy.
Mott said the company chose the various locations based on
the availability of talent, a lower cost of living and a
high-tech industry presence. He said GM would not be hampered by
not opening a location in Silicon Valley, California.
"There's not a lock on innovation there," he said of Silicon
Valley. "It just happens to be a collection point. There are
high-innovation centers outside of there."
Mott, a former Hewlett-Packard Co executive,
outlined his plans last June to GM's IT employees, which then
numbered about 1,500. GM currently employs almost 5,500 people
on its IT staff and that number will rise to about 9,000 when
the transition is complete, Mott said on Wednesday.
GM, which has not disclosed the cost or savings of its
strategy, is targeting 30 percent to 35 percent of the hires
being recent college graduates, who add a high level of energy,
Last October, GM said it would shift 3,000 people over six
months to its payroll from HP, which has long handled IT work
for the automaker. Mott said most have joined GM
and the rest of the shift will be completed by April 1.
In the two months prior to that, GM had announced plans to
hire 2,000 workers to staff new IT centers in Texas and
Michigan. The Arizona center will be located in the Phoenix
suburb of Chandler.
Effective April 1, Mott said GM will open a temporary center
in Arizona and begin hiring. The new, $21 million center, which
GM will lease, is expected to open by the first quarter of 2014.
GM also said last summer that as part of its plan it would
shift from 23 data centers worldwide to just two, both in
Michigan. It opened one in Warren, and is still looking for the
second location. Mott said the second location could be in