Be relevant or be sidelined - The CIO’s struggle

Through a recent survey, Logicalis uncovered that 53% of CIOs and IT Directors spend 70% or more of their time on day-to-day management of technology. It is also found that 80% of them spend at least half their time on low value, non-strategic activity.

This leaves little room for them to contribute to high-level strategic initiatives. CIOs are beginning to acknowledge their lack of contribution to strategy and hence, fearing that they will be pushed aside by line of business managers.

Their survey responses reflected this well with 60% of the CIOs that responded believing that line of business managers will hold more power over IT decision making over the next three to five years.

The vast consumerisation of cloud services and other technological solutions played a big hand in this, as it enabled and empowered line of business managers to make informed technological purchases and decisions without any consultation with the IT department.

However, CIOs are not willing to give up without a fight. They are proactively making changes to become and then stay relevant in an organisation.

73% of the CIOs and IT Directors surveyed responded that they’d like to spend at least half their time on strategic activities and they’ve determined several ways to do that:

  • 63% believe they need to streamline and optimise their technology infrastructure to free up time, so that they can place a greater focus on strategic goals
  • 31% plan to engage the use of managed service partners by selecting single vendors to manage specific technologies and/or services across multiple territories
  • 30% will hand more day-to-day management activities over to specialist managed service vendors
  • 19% seek to increase adoption of the cloud consumption model

Ultimately, CIOs are looking to become an indispensable strategic component to every organisation. Ian Cook, Chairman of Logicalis Group, believes that “IT leadership is now actively looking to drive a services-led transformation strategy to re-align from a technology-defined function to one that is service-defined”.

Chris Gabriel, CTO of Logicalis Group concurs and anticipates a transformation beyond the CIO role. He believes that the entire IT function can evolve to become a ‘pseudo service provider’ whose role goes above supporting legacy technology towards advising and delivering technology solutions that firstly, enable the business to firstly become more agile and secondly, achieve its strategic goals.

Both agree that the key is for CIOs and IT Directors to change the perception of IT in the wider organisation. And from what they have seen, CIOs and IT directors are building plans to actively do this.

“CIOs are taking a proactive approach to staying relevant, focused on a transformation agenda across all aspects of IT infrastructure, operations and the end-user experience. Creating a service-defined enterprise, in which IT and line of business are working towards shared priorities is now a crucial mandate for the CIOs we surveyed”, according to Ian.

However, in their quest to become a relevant service-defined function, they will have to navigate through several complexities:

  • Finding the right service partner(s) that can provide effective services along with efficiency, maturity and agility will not be easy given the wide range of service providers in the market.
  • Providing a service catalogue that internal customers can consume at a price point and experience comparable with external providers
  • Making sure their service catalogue is comprehensive enough to deliver the necessary services to the organisation whilst ensuring that there are not too many service partners. The risk is that they will have a service providers sprawl and additional management tasks that will inadvertently take up their time, bringing them back to square one.

The best way to overcome these complexities is consolidation. CIOs need to identify the right service partners who can work across their service lifecycle and consolidate them into their service catalogue.

The Logicalis Optimal Services solution was developed for exactly that purpose. Comprised of Business Productivity Services and Technology, Infrastrcuture and Operational Service Portfolio, it allows you to optimise your systems, technology investments and IT operations for maximum productivity.  The Managed Services solution enables IT to free up time to focus on core activities.

To minimise management tasks and ensure your contribution to strategy, learn more about Logicalis Managed Services or our recently launched Optimal Services.

Tags CIO Leadership, Cloud, cloud service broker, IT consumerisation


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