CIOs: Give end users what they want

IT leaders need to help employees get the most out of cool new technologies if they want to safeguard their future.

The Doctor's Surgery: Dr Mark Samuels, editor at advisory organisation CIO Connect, examines the future role of the IT leader in this new monthly column.

You have to feel for the CIO. The IT department, which has never been the most popular part of the business, is now in danger of becoming a direct enemy to the ever-powerful end-user.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Get those policies right and, rather than being an enemy, the CIO can establish a flexible route towards a brighter, digital future.

The customary role of the technology team is to provide IT resources to help people complete their jobs. Most of the time, employees across the business complain the kit they have is too old, too slow and too unreliable.

The traditional role of the tech team has changed recently, as broadband speeds have increased and innovative IT companies are starting to create flexible options relating to on-demand technology and mobile devices.

CIOs should be helping the business to use the digital innovation emerging from cool IT vendors. But the technology team is in danger of being sidelined as line-of-business executives buy IT on-demand.

The traditional CIO and vendor relationship is also under threat. Long-standing concerns, like licensing and vendor lock-in, are being replaced by concerns over a vendor's ability to keep pace with change.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

Everything, in short, is moving quickly. Internal IT teams are struggling to keep pace with change, as are the technology suppliers that have traditionally helped CIOs develop an enterprise architecture.

So how can CIOs deliver value to the business in an era of fast-paced change? Most crucially, technology chiefs need to recognise that supply is an old school skill. Demand will be the crucial factor for the successful IT leader of the future.

Vendors have to adapt to this fast-changing world too and CIOs need to pick suppliers based on their ability to offer flexibility, not on their ability to deliver a set technical approach.

The key to delivering value in this flexible world is end-user demand. Employees know what they want, and they want the CIO to make it happen.

IT leaders must establish the policies that allow users to make the most of the cool technologies they demand. Get those policies right and, rather than being an enemy, the CIO can establish a flexible route towards a brighter, digital future.

Featured Resources

The case for a marketing content hub

Transform your digital marketing to deliver customer expectations

Download now

Fast, flexible and compliant e-signatures for global businesses

Be at the forefront of digital transformation with electronic signatures

Download now

Why CEOS should care about the move to SAP S/4HANA

And how they can accelerate business value

Download now

IT faces new security challenges in the wake of COVID-19

Beat the crisis by learning how to secure your network

Download now

Most Popular

Microsoft Windows

Microsoft warns users not to install Windows 10's May update

28 May 2020
Server & storage

Dell EMC PowerEdge R7525 review: An EPYC core density to make Intel weep

26 May 2020
Network & Internet

Intel releases Wi-Fi and Bluetooth driver updates for Windows 10

26 May 2020