Mats Alerius, PA IT and sourcing expert, has written an article for Computer Sweden on the changing role of the CIO. In the article, Mats writes that IT is already essential for organisations in both the private and public sectors. As the world becomes increasingly digitised, he explains that the CIO of the future must take on a new role and greater responsibilities.
Outlining some recent advances in digitisation, Mats writes, "Google Goggles is an innovation that could change the work of surgeons, construction managers, architects and police officers... Likewise, the commercialisation of 3D printers could bring about a revolution in manufacturing and transportation." He goes on to ask what the implications would be for a world in which "citizens were given responsibility for their health records and their payroll, inheritance and savings data."
As a result, “Working in IT for an organisation will soon be something entirely different than it was just a few years ago… IT is playing an increasingly important role in organisations’ operational focus and approach,” explains Mats.
Mats explains that the CIO of the future will need to take on a much more strategic role embedding forward thinking throughout the organisation. Considering the experience required to do this, Mats brings attention to the fact that Ericsson, Sweden's "classic engineering company" has recently recruited a former McKinsey management consultant as its CIO.
Mats writes, “The interesting thing is that such a technology-intensive company should appoint a business and management consultant to the top position of its IT department. It is most definitely not technical knowledge that will be the decisive quality for companies choosing their next CIO. Much more important will be the ability to embed technology and use it to develop and streamline business operations."
He concludes by saying that all IT professionals need to “think big and think strategically. Otherwise you might see an economist or business developer get the top job as CIO.” And addressing the senior managers of all firms, he says, “Ensure you invest in technically insightful and knowledgeable strategists… Do not leave it too late to discover that digital opportunities have changed the world.”
Mats Alerius is an IT and sourcing expert at PA Consulting Group.
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