CIOs Need to Become Chief Innovation Officers in 2013

    While many CIOs continue to wrestle with their relevancy in the cloud, a new survey of 327 business executives and CIOs conducted by Dimensional Research on behalf of Host Analytics, a provider of financial management applications delivered as a service, finds that CIOs in general are starting to see more value in cloud computing than their business counterparts.

    Debates still rage over who is primarily driving cloud computing adoption within the enterprise. But Diane Hagglund, senior research analyst for Dimensional Research, says that beyond merely lowering costs, the study shows that CIOs are finding a lot of extra value in cloud computing, especially in the area of compliance.

    It turns out that many organizations are running versions of applications that are several versions behind. That not only creates support issues, it also raises the specter of being out of compliance with any number of existing and forthcoming regulations. By making greater use of cloud applications that are updated regularly, compliance becomes much less of an issue.

    CIOs are also finding that using cloud applications makes their organizations more competitive because the software deployed as a service gives them access to new features faster.

    Hagglund says cloud computing clearly gives CIOs a mandate to become brokers of cloud applications within their organization, which should afford them opportunities to play a more strategic role inside their organization.

    In fact, Alex Ortiz, director of product marketing at Host Analytics, supports the notion that CIO in the future should stand for chief innovation officer. Whatever the role of the CIO becomes, it’s clear there will be less emphasis on IT infrastructure management in favor of a bigger role involving the integration of business processes across multiple instances of cloud computing.

    Not every CIO will obviously be able to make that transition. But those who do will probably find their new role not only more personally rewarding, but also rewarding from a compensation perspective as well.

    Mike Vizard
    Mike Vizard
    Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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