Moving Away from IT Plumber to Enabler of Business Transformation

There is a perception that CIOs and IT are all about flushing pipes and keeping a clean house. There is nothing wrong with this perception, but Divina Paredes argues for CIO Asia that they need to step beyond this distinction to also be seen as leaders of business transformation. Basically, you should try to be a plumber like Super Mario.

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Paredes begins with some statistics:

When asked who are their biggest advocates, 34 per cent of IT respondents cited the CFO, compared with 28 per cent from line of business (LOB) respondents, notes

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Francis on the key points of the report The 2014 New Zealand C-Suite Survey: Closing the CIO/CXO Gap.

Just over a quarter (27 per cent) of IT respondents cited the CEO as the biggest advocate of IT, compared with 43 per cent of their LOB colleagues. Nineteen per cent of IT respondents cited the chief operating officer as their biggest advocate, while 18 per cent LOB respondents cited this was the case.

A shift needs to occur where “good hygiene” is simply assumed as a function of IT, rather than a quintessential topic of conversation during C-suite meetings. CIOs should instead be using meeting time to talk about what IT is doing to grow the business. At the present time, CIOs cite lack of understanding of new technology, lack of required skills to effectively execute ICT, and lack of budget for business requirements as the three main challenges getting in the way. Big data analytics, social, and customer experience are some of the places CIOs can use to their advantage to build leverage.

In total, the survey covered 1421 executives across Asia, so its insights are applicable across countries. It may take a little soul searching for CIOs to find their inner Super Mario, but daring to take one big jump could make for a good start. You can read the full article here: http://www.cio-asia.com/mgmt/careers/moving-away-from-it-plumber-to-enabler-of-business-transformation/

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