CIOs need to maintain their focus on technology, even as they become core business people.
That's the view stated by Colin Rees, CIO of Dominos Pizza, in a recent interview with V3.
"The CIO position is definitely becoming more accepted as being absolutely core to a number of businesses, a successful IT leader now needs to be accepted as a business leader but can't afford to lose his or her technical roots," said Rees. "This means its a tough role which needs a broad range of skills and attributes including leadership, international experience, commerciality and a great IT leader need to be a good influencer of people, a coach or mentor and of course they need to understand technology," he added.
John Linwood, former CTO of Wood Mackenzie and the BBC believes that CIOs need to become more strategic, and become more integral to the boardroom.
"My key thought is that the role is evolving as technology has become critical to the future of all organisations, and yet many organisations don't understand what that means for them," explained Linwood. "The future value for most organisations will be enabled by, and in many cases driven by, technology. Consequently, the role of the CIO is increasingly strategic, to help the Board and the Exec understand the implications of technology advances to their business, both the threats and the opportunities.
"I call this 'the art of the possible' where new business opportunities are created through technology advances, often changing the underlying business models," said Linwood.
Other CIOs recently told V3 that the CIO role today is about balancing the need to keep systems running with the need to invest in innovation.
Rees added that he believes security skills will be increasingly needed within organisations.
"Cyber security is becoming a more and more important skill as the threats increase almost exponentially. I am not sure I see any particular roles disappearing but i do see that IT people will need at all levels to become broader in their outlook, and they need to continue to develop knowledge across all areas of the business."
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