Today’s CIO is the CEO’s 2IC. Overseeing nearly all parts of an organization, the CIO is uniquely qualified to drive business change and growth. After overcoming the hurdle of mobilizing a remote workforce in March and April, the CIO’s attention has gone all in on revenue retention and generation. A July IDG survey found that 53% of CIO respondents cited “maintain overall revenue, given market shifts” as a top digital business objective, compared to 22% in 2019, and the desire to drive new revenue increased to 53% from 48% in 2019. This focus on driving revenue opportunities has set the new expectation of the CIO amongst their team, peers and board of directors.
According to Gartner, CIOs should take it upon themselves to proactively explain to the CFO and C-suite peers what technology can do for the enterprise and how IT can align itself to the organization’s changing priorities and strategy, while tracking the impact IT investments have on business outcomes. IT is no longer just about driving operating efficiencies, IT has a commitment (and advantage) to improving customer engagement, and, ultimately, impacting the bottom line. This shift starts with the network, which has never been more important than now, and extends to security, collaboration tools, and business applications – an IT stack that addresses today’s enterprise.
Building confidence in your leadership team and BOD takes time, but today’s successful CIO’s need to act quickly and decisively. Partha Iyengar, a Gartner fellow, explains: Those CIOs “really have to drive revenue and business outcomes directly, but if the CIO doesn’t have the credentials of being a strong business leader they’re not being given that responsibility. But boards very clearly believe technology is essential to increasing revenue and profitability.”
The days of IT being siloed from the rest of the organization are behind us. As the global pandemic rages on, remote lite to remote right continues and will move into 2021. Organizations and CIOs that do not adapt to embrace this change, will be left behind.
The pandemic has accelerated the need for CIOs to pitch in on the bottom line. Here’s how tech execs are transforming into more revenue-focused IT leaders.