5C’s that redefine the role of CIO

5C’s that redefine the role of CIO

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October 07, 2013
5C’s that redefine the role of CIO

A central theme we’ve been exploring as part of The Enterprisers Project is around the role of the CIO, and how it seems to be evolving beyond what was traditionally encompassed by the word “Information.”

Few leaders within the enterprise have as much visibility and accountability across the organization as the CIO (along with HR and Finance). This dynamic is putting CIOs in a position to be far more influential to—and responsible for—the ultimate success or failure of their organizations. It’s a daunting, challenging and truly exciting proposition.

With this in mind, we’ve been conducting research and having conversations with Enterprisers around the country. Each time we meet a technology leader we ask, if you could replace the “I” in CIO with something else, what would you put there?

Well, I’m not very creative,” is the first response we typically get. But then they quickly follow on with some really interesting and creative answers. Here are a few of the new CIO titles that have caught our ears:

How would you fill the blank in C_O?


Chief Business Enabler. Because the CIO will need to evolve to becoming the go-to person for the business to achieve their goals.”


Chief Cloud Officer. The second C is for cloud because I believe that most enterprises will be cloud based.”


Because it will be an Android-dominated future! (Just kidding, but pretty close.)”


I think it should be Chief Systems, Solutions & Synergies Officer.”


Chief Everything Officer,” says Aaron Stibel, EVP Technology at Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. “It seems like we’re just in everybody’s business now—whether it be data analytic to help Sales drive their targets… Same thing with Customer Service… We work very closely with Product and Marketing and then the CEO suite. Just about every decision that’s made is made off of our data, and just about every question that’s asked is answered with our data. So that puts [IT] firmly in just about every office at the C-level.”

But, the real question is, do you think the CIO is still all about Information? Or has this role become something much more far-reaching (and possibly more interesting) so that CVO, CAO or C+O is the new CIO?

Tell us what you think—we’ll be gathering comments here and on our Twitter feed @4Enterprisers, and sharing them with you in the weeks ahead.


C?O is one of the topics covered by “The Enterprisers Project.” Be sure to follow us @4enterprisers. Here we’re discussing how the role of enterprise CIOs is expanding beyond IT to influence decisions across the boardroom and the organization. Learn more about The Enterprisers Project, and join the discussion with CIO magazine at The Enterprising CIO.

Community of business-minded IT leaders exploring the evolving role of CIOs as they drive business strategy and inspire enterprise-wide innovation.

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