A January 2018 article in Forbes likened CIOs of the past to plumbers – connecting data networks through piping or taping together operational or project-driven initiatives.
This is no longer true as organizations realize that every business is a technology business.
This article highlights four trends affecting CIOs, requiring them to stretch further as their role expands strategically, becoming increasingly market-focused.
Trend #1: Setting the Digital & Business Agenda
CIOs are establishing themselves as strategic leaders rather than mostly focused on realizing the priorities of other c-suite executives.
From the Forbes piece, they’re “actively setting the agenda for the future of the digital enterprise.”
More often, CIOs have a role that mixes functional, strategic and transformational duties as revealed in Gartner’s fall 2017 report on the “CIO Agenda.” Survey results show that the top two priorities for over 3,000 worldwide CIOs are growth/market share and digital business/digital transformation.
The Result? CIOs are looking for ways to deepen the impact that their Products and Services have on their customer experiences, desires and business outcomes. Then, they want to create a clear vision for how digital technologies accelerate to achieve the best results.
Read On! Connecting the Voice of your Customers to your current state Value Stream is a great way to start this journey. Read our article here.
Trend #2: Cultural Change Agents
“CIOs are on the road from digital experimentation to digital scaling,” said Rowsell-Jones, Vice President & Research Director, Gartner in their “2018 CIO Agenda Survey.”
Boards are challenging CIOs to bridge the gap between the potential born out of pilots and scaling digital transformation throughout the organization. The Gartner survey revealed that most CIOs expect to become change agents for their organizations; much more focused on business processes and how technology capability is infused into and adopted by operations, customer service, marketing.
The Result? CIOs are designing transformation projects to include technology, as well as education, training and adopting onboarding as part of their project plans.
Read On! Having an organizational change framework to rely on can increase the chance of success. Read our real-world example.
Trend #3: New Roles Emerging – Transformation and Digital
While some IT departments are rebranding themselves as “technology” departments, even some relatively new titles are emerging in the CIO role domain. CIOs are donning titles like Chief Transformation Officer and Chief Digital Officer to represent the more strategic leadership role they entail. A PwC report from 2017 touted that almost 20 percent of the world’s top 2,500 companies have appointed a CDO.
This trend reflects the change in positioning within leadership that aligns with the growing maturity of their technology portfolios.
The Result? CIOs must build technology roadmaps that are bimodal – they establish a vision for innovation and new technologies while evolving existing systems that keep the organization operational throughout transformation.
Read On! Bimodal thinking is key to balancing the functional, strategic and transformational roles CIOs inhabit. Read our piece on Bimodal Thinking.
Trend #4: Creating an Engine that Serves Internal and External Customers
A presenter at the 2016 Gartner CIO Leadership Forum in London said, “Data is cheap, algorithms drive value.”
This reflects the c-suite attitude that everything must be “intelligent”, and that internal and external customers are demanding more sophistication throughout their relationship with an organization.
CIOs are charged with assessing and leading this “intelligent” transformation so that employees can be more efficient and innovative, products and services can add value that inspires loyalty and growth, and technologies can differentiate in the market.
The Result? CIOs need support, internally and externally, to create a vision that helps the organization grow and stand out while addressing the highest priorities that hold the most potential.
Read On! CIOs are exploring AI technologies to see how they can automate and bring efficiencies and intelligence to everything from rote operations to customer service and service delivery. Read our perspective in “Adopting a Strategic View of Artificial Intelligence.”
How is your CIO role changing?
Gartner’s CIO survey report says that, “2018 (is) a defining moment for CIOs who don’t want to be left behind.”
For over a decade, SDLC Partners has worked alongside CIOs to address the evolving challenges they face – increasing efficiency, becoming flexible to market and technology trends, and freeing up staff and resources for innovation.
To connect with SDLC, call 412.251.0848 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.