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Why the CIO 3.0 is both a CIO and CDO

Why the CIO 3.0 is both a CIO and CDO

4 Key challenges in 2017 for the CIO 3.0: Part 2

The CIO 3.0 must be able to guide the organisation through potentially new working practices/methodologies that enable the delivery of new products and features to market quickly.

Pete Yates, Spark Ventures

Read part one of the ‘The old school CIO is dead’ article here.

3. Managing stakeholders and building relationships

Critical to gaining support across the organisation is the ability of the CIO to build win-win relationships with key stakeholders and to get the organisation as a whole excited by their vision and strategy for the change.

Articulating through inspiring stories and demonstrating the new digital world will also help your teams decide if they actually want to buy in to the transformation. As Gartner’s Ian Cox states, “There are a lot more people working in technology with a lot of other departments other than IT holding their own technology budgets.”

Cox also believes that “the challenge for CIOs is how they influence the decisions being made outside of their own remits and how they can use their skill sets to make their own decisions to stay relevant in the industry.”

The organisation outside of IT will drive new work into IT, be it a new product or feature that IT must be able to deliver quickly whilst also meeting timeframes.

This requires IT and the business to work closely and collaboratively together to meet the desired outcome This can be achieved using Agile methodologies which may be a new concept for the IT team and its organisation.

The CIO 3.0 must be able to guide the organisation through potentially new working practices/methodologies that enable the delivery of new products and features to market quickly.

4. Staying current and relevant

It is vital that IT and the CIO stays up to date with industry and technology trends (e.g. cloud or not? IoT, digital, SaaS, AI) and can demonstrate or at least has a view on how these can be utilised by the organisation both now and in the future. Being relevant and current reduces an organisation’s need to look elsewhere for advice and technology solutions.

Part of remaining relevant is the ability of the CIO and IT teams to deliver on projects, service levels or advice in general, or risk losing the trust of the organisation and thus the ear of the executive team.

If the CIO and IT teams cannot consistently and quickly deliver to the needs of the organisation then you may see a proliferation of shadow IT within the company, again a possible sign that IT is not being agile or responsive enough to meet the needs of the organisation.

Read more: CIO Upfront: Is there such a thing as bad innovation?

Above all get the basics right so IT can build on solid technology decisions and solutions that support the Organisation and its strategies (growth or otherwise).

CEOs: Is the CIO 3.0 the only option?

If the CIO focuses on the above four key areas, they and IT can remain relevant, customer focused and a driver of change so that the organisation can achieve its goals and strategies alongside, rather than having to go around IT.

Organisations will require the CIO and IT to guide them through periods of significant change and lead digital strategies, innovation and the customer journey.

Read more: IT teams: How to remain an organisational asset in this 'digital or die' era

The CIO 3.0 in 2017 is both a CIO and CDO - they are open and visible with the ability to model the new behaviours required.

They are also a visionary leader with an ability to quickly gain organisational trust, giving them the mandate whilst allowing them to create, execute and embody the transformation vision and business strategy. With the variety of generations now in the workforce understanding how to/what motive/s these people is essential – it could be as simple as celebrating success and getting to know them as individuals, and finding out what drives them.

Knowing your teams and people will give the CIO 3.0 an insight into their motivations and how they like to be engaged which will help ensure a successful transformation. A good leader with all the right characteristics is essential for this.

The CIO 3.0 is more important than ever

Lack of a clear strategy, leadership and the ability to balance the “old and new worlds” as well as being unable to attract and retain talent will seriously inhibit any organisation’s digital aspirations. The CIO 3.0 is critical in bringing those that are less digitally inclined along for the journey, by being a visionary and story teller who can navigate through what is bound to be periods of uncertainty and fluidity.

The CIO 3.0 may have to lead the business’ digital strategy, vision creation, execution and to give guidance, where they must empower and drive their teams to deliver on that strategy and vision rather than dictate. Positively challenging the status quo is also essential, as is navigating the internal politics of an organisation and to help re-align mind-sets to the new digital way.

For an organisation choosing the right CIO 3.0 may require looking further afield (e.g. such as leaders across the business or are not necessarily current CIOs) where not all CIOs are equal or even that technical. Long gone are the days of using the big vendors (such as IBM or SAP) to build your IT environments, we are seeing CIOs as a driver of change/innovation and broker of services, where they reside over hybrid clouds, SaaS solutions, automation and Agile rules, and going open-source is no longer a dirty word.

The CIO 3.0 is a multifaceted rolesand is vital in driving the organisation through challenges and periods of uncertainty.

Hire the wrong person as a CIO 3.0 and it will be to the detriment of an organisation, its people and customers.

Pete Yates (@peteyatesnz) is head PMO, Operations, IT & Platforms at Spark Platforms at Spark Ventures, technology services group manager/CIO at Foster Moore, IS infrastructure manager at Auckland Council and Global Head of the Customer Ops Centre for a managed services provider based in the UK. He is also a regular contributor to CIO NZ as well as his own blog livingthetech.com

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