The Digital Transformation of Chief Information Officers

Chief Information Officers (CIOs) have long been a key member of the C-Suite, and recent findings suggest that the role is changing. A survey by Gartner, a world leading technology research firm, has suggested that the CIO’s role is no longer limited to IT delivery – the role is going through its own process of digital transformation to become much more business oriented.

Digital transformation is a key reason behind the role changing. Many businesses are transforming to integrate digital technologies into every aspect of business – including revenue generation. The Vice President and distinguished analyst at Gartner, Andy Rowsell-Jones has commented, “While IT delivery is still a responsibility of the CIO, achieving revenue growth and developing digital transformation were identified most often as top business priorities for organisations in 2018. If CIOs want to remain relevant, they need to align heir activities with the business priorities of their organisations.”

The role of modern CIO is therefore viewd to be evolving to include aspects such as business advising where the individual has knowledge of not only which cloud computing platforms or ERP systems can best meet the business’s go forward strategy, but also how cutting-edge technologies like artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things and big data / analytics could help to develop business revenue streams, identify new sales leads, reduce operating expenses and better market its products and services.

Gartner’s survey, compiled the responses from over 1,000 Chief Information officers in Europe, Middle East and Africa. Many of the CIOs commented that their role had already expanded considerably, with 41% of respondents now responsible for their firm’s innovation. In order for this to be successful a growing number of Chief Information Officers (47% of respondents) are now responsible for separate digital business teams in addition to their IT teams. And due to the team’s focus on business growth the digital business team is comprised of both technologists and business professionals.

For many businesses the modern CIO is more critical than ever as ‘Digital’ is no longer just a suite of tools that serve the business – ‘Digital’ is now what the business is, how it will grow and how it will thrive.

Andy Rowsell-Jones has concluded, “Your role as a CIO is transforming in light of the accelerating adoption of digital business and the fast pace of technological innovation. It no longer suffices just to be responsible for IT delivery, and it is of paramount importance to address broader business objectives as well. The time has come to master your new role as a business executive.”

Miramar Global operates across the TMT sector with the in depth knowledge required to support our customer’s evolution in key trends. We understand roles are evolving with advances in technologies and strive to help our customers build a team strong enough to navigate some of the industry’s biggest challenges. Please get in touch for more information.


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