The #1 job of every CIO

May 13, 2009
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Reading these two surveys from CIOInsight got me thinking….

#1 – Top Ways the CIO Role is Changing 
From CIOInsight: “2009 CIO Role Survey: What Tomorrow’s CIO Will Have To Do”

The survey lists 36 ways! Here are the top 5 (“RC” refers to Role Changing):
  1. Driving Strategic Use of Information
  2. Reducing Business Costs
  3. Leading Enterprise Change Initiatives
  4. Driving Business Model Innovation
  5. Expanding Current Customer Relationships
#2 – Top CIO Business Priorities for 2009
From CIOInsight: “Top CIO Priorities for 2009: Business Priorities

The survey lists 23 business, management, and technology priorities. Here are the top 5 business (“BP” refers to Business Priority):

  1. Improving Business Processes
  2. Delivering Better Customer Service
  3. Cutting Costs
  4. Generating More Business from new and Current Customers
  5. Innovative New Products/Services
I have an inkling that there could be one grand-unified initiative that addresses all 10 items above. Bear with me:
  • BP1, BP3 and BP4 can lead to RC2
  • BP1 and BP5 can drive RC1, RC3, and RC5
  • RC5 is one way to get to BP2, BP4 and BP5
  • RC3 and RC4, BP1, BP4, and BP5 are examples of RC1
  • …and so on

The point is that these 10 items are interrelated…


Reading these two surveys from CIOInsight got me thinking….

#1 – Top Ways the CIO Role is Changing 
From CIOInsight: “2009 CIO Role Survey: What Tomorrow’s CIO Will Have To Do”

The survey lists 36 ways! Here are the top 5 (“RC” refers to Role Changing):
  1. Driving Strategic Use of Information
  2. Reducing Business Costs
  3. Leading Enterprise Change Initiatives
  4. Driving Business Model Innovation
  5. Expanding Current Customer Relationships
#2 – Top CIO Business Priorities for 2009
From CIOInsight: “Top CIO Priorities for 2009: Business Priorities

The survey lists 23 business, management, and technology priorities. Here are the top 5 business (“BP” refers to Business Priority):

  1. Improving Business Processes
  2. Delivering Better Customer Service
  3. Cutting Costs
  4. Generating More Business from new and Current Customers
  5. Innovative New Products/Services
I have an inkling that there could be one grand-unified initiative that addresses all 10 items above. Bear with me:
  • BP1, BP3 and BP4 can lead to RC2
  • BP1 and BP5 can drive RC1, RC3, and RC5
  • RC5 is one way to get to BP2, BP4 and BP5
  • RC3 and RC4, BP1, BP4, and BP5 are examples of RC1
  • …and so on

The point is that these 10 items are interrelated.

So the grand-unified initiative ingredients would:
  • Be Customer focused (expanding relationships, delivering better service, attracting & retaining, cross-selling)
  • Include processes and technology to help Connect Marketing (capture) to Sales (close) to Development (Innovate) to Fulfillment (deliver), etc.
  • Reduce transaction costs (lead-to-close, order-to-cash, procure-to-pay, and so on)
  • Get everyone in the organization focused on the most important things (customer sat, revenue, and cost)
So it sounds like the #1 job of every CIO is to enable the alignment and focus of the entire organization on the most important things.
Where do you start? Uncover and agree on what “the most important things” are from each business function perspective, and aligned with strategic objectives (start with the executive leadership team)  and document the agreement in a standard way (our clients use our Broadsheets to do that).  

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