How CIO All-Stars are Optimizing and Driving Productivity

CIOs love what they do, regardless of the many challenges they now face. That’s because they also have at their disposal a range of new capabilities, from new analytics to direct marketing and promotion in real-time across multiple channels. Michael Hickins writes for Forbes about takeaways for CIOs from the Oracle Industry Connect conference that took place in Washington D.C.

Maxing Productivity

If you’re a CIO this year, perhaps your goal is to help your organization “optimize and drive productivity.” Such is the goal of Anup Sharma, after changing economic conditions led his company, GE Oil and Gas, to consider new approaches to maximizing returns on investment.

It’s a pivotal time because of analytics and their potential to unleash great marketing campaigns or to drive supply chain improvement. However, cautions Kris Singleton of Omni Hotels & Resorts, having the data is one thing; interpreting that data and ensuring that it’s relevant is quite another. This goes along an important theme of the conference, that of balancing risk with gain. For instance:

The advent of new technologies inside cars represents “a new interaction channel,” for SiriusXM, Pratt said. But connected cars also represent challenges, as the company has to balance entertaining its customers without endangering their lives. “We try to create a consistent experience for our customers, whether it’s on tablets or smartphones or the web—but we have to be careful about driver distractions…”

Harnessing Complexity

On the risk side of business, the idea is to maximize the value of data to avoid failures that might occur in complex systems. Sharma’s example of sensors that monitor volatile mixtures of gas, liquid, and pressures is a case and point. Such systems are not readily amenable to human understanding, and when quick decisions are the only protection against catastrophe, it pays to have IT on your side.

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