CIOs are stepping up as business innovators at long last
I have been writing about the need for CIOs and technology executives to step up and demonstrate through their ideas and leadership how technology can be used to transform their organization. I am not talking only about transforming business processes, but communication with and understanding of customers and the delivery of new or enhanced products and services to them.
Research by Cutter (the May 21st issue) indicates that the tide of progress seems to have started to turn. CIOs are not just relying on business leaders to set the direction and then advise on the technology that might help. They are not just reacting. They are starting to lead.
Over the last couple of years, the number of CIOs who see themselves as “key enablers for business innovation” has doubled to about 60%. The number who are reactive to business innovation has not changed much; it remains at about 30%. The difference lies in the number of those who don’t see business innovation as an important role for IT, and where IT is even seen as an impediment for business innovation.
But while CIOs may see themselves as key enablers, they still haven’t embraced a leadership role in “creating new opportunities for business innovation”.
I am an optimist. I believe the potential for technology to transform is immense. I also believe that if the current set of CIOs don’t step up they will be replaced – as CEOs realize they are being left behind.
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