How to Narrow CMO-CIO Divide

The CMO and CIO do not need to stand on opposite sides of the river, demarcating everything that falls under their respective domains. They can stand together and create a unified strategy for how to best support the business with technology. In an article for CIO magazine, Hakan Altintepe discusses one channel for getting there.

Bridging Worlds

In some organizations, CMOs assume control of the strategic end of technology in IT, while CIOs are relegated to the back-end technology. Altintepe believes CIOs should control the whole shebang, but with CMO blessing. So the question is how to get that buy-in from the CMO. The first step is for the CIO to embrace the much wider business perspective befitting someone who wants to lead technology for the whole organization.

Altintepe identifies three specific areas where CIOs are currently still leaving value on the table. One is “dormant output,” which is the work produced in a project that ultimately has no business value as a result of strategic changes that happened in mid-development. Another is cost of delay, which is the opportunity cost of delaying technology solution implementation. And the last area is demand and supply imbalances, about which Altintepe writes this:

In our study we measured the effect of leveraging different data sources vs. not using them at all. In the end, we observed up to 15% cost difference between the great and the good performing practices. Just to make this point real, most project managers still monitor ‘job completed’ to determine if an agile project is on schedule. Our experience tells us that predictions of ‘job remaining’ is a much better estimator about the schedule performance of agile projects. However, traditional project management tools cannot produce this information even though all required data already exist in IT systems.

To bridge the gap between CMO and CIO, the two should agree upon some basic performance metrics to share in common. Or at the very least, when IT is taking on new deliveries, IT teams should ask when customers will need the delivery and what the cost of delay would be. Having regular discussions of this sort will bring mindsets closer together.

For a longer discussion and additional ideas, you can view the original article here:

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