CIOs making their presence felt in the boardroom: BT study

  • 43% of CIOs say they now spend more time dealing with corporate issues
  • The digital CIO operates horizontally across the business as an enabler
CIOs making their presence felt in the boardroom: BT study

THE importance of the chief information officer (CIO) at boardroom level continues to rise – according to a BT study, 72% of senior IT decision makers say that the CIO has become more central in the boardroom over the last two years.
Also, 43% of CIOs say that they now spend more time dealing with corporate issues, BT said in a statement.
BT’s recent research The BT CI Report 2016 – The Digital CIO was based on a survey of 1,030 senior IT decision makers based in 11 countries: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Singapore, Spain, the United Kingdom and Ireland, and the United States.
The research was undertaken in March 2016 by Vanson Bourne, an independent market research firm, and builds on the insights contained in the 2014 report Creativity and the Modern CIO
CIOs around the world are embracing digital transformation to reinvent their organisations’ processes and systems, BT said, citing its research.
However, according to the report, CIOs find themselves increasingly challenged to find the time to develop creative solutions for the business.
Close to two-thirds (61%) of senior IT decision makers feel that the CIO is spending more time maintaining current IT systems than searching for new solutions.
That is a drop from 2014, when the figure was 74%, but it shows that despite ambitions for digital transformation, the CIO still has to deal with legacy systems, BT said.
“The role of the digital CIO is one of the most demanding in business. They need to be strategic, creative, growth-minded and cost conscious,” said BT’s Global Services chief executive officer Luis Alvarez.
“They have to understand technology and people, and balance control and safety with enablement and speed. They are becoming the pioneers of change,” he added.
New tech, new role
The BT CIO Report 2016 also shows that CIOs are clear on the most disruptive technology trends – cloud, mobility and collaboration, and data.
According to the report, a fifth of global organisations are already completely cloud-centric, and a further 46% have more than half their applications and infrastructure in the cloud.
With the CIO acting as a catalyst, 76% of large organisations across the world have, or plan to adopt, a ‘multi-speed’ approach to technology-led initiatives. This involves more creativity, more flexibility and a more dynamic operating model.
According to BT’s research, 65% of CIOs are also noting rapid changes in the KPIs (key performance indicators) measuring their own performance, with a clear trend putting digital transformation at the centre of all their activities.
In 72% of the organisations covered by BT’s latest research, multiple teams are sourcing and commissioning core IT products and services without the involvement of the IT function.
The latest research suggests that the IT function is growing more comfortable with providing an overall enablement role, with a particular focus on data security, a suitably powerful infrastructure, and ensuring there are no duplications of effort across the organisation, BT said.
These changing responsibilities underlie the new role of the digital CIO which operates horizontally, across the business as an enabler.
Meanwhile, BT also announced the launch of The Digital Possible, a global initiative aimed at empowering CIOs to better embrace ambitious digital transformation agendas for large organisations all over the world.
The company said it would also announce in the coming weeks and months a new wave of innovative services, accelerating the execution of its Cloud of Clouds portfolio strategy.
They will cover the technologies identified by the BT CIO Report 2016 as being the most disruptive: Cloud, mobility and collaboration, and data.
Related Stories:
Shifting cultures: CIOs need to lead the charge
CIOs need to focus on vision, not control: Gartner
CIOs: Evolve, or face the dire consequences
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