With the fast paced changes in the business world, Modern CIOs have to go the extra mile if they are to remain relevant and surmount the ‘modern challenge’ for CIOs. Initially the CIO’s role was all about infrastructure and the CIO had to make sure of the feeds and speeds. Currently, the CIO has to step up to business expectations, reducing costs and driving innovations. Sometimes the three are exclusive of each other; accomplishing the three is the ‘modern challenge’ for every CIO.

A recent discussion at CxOTalk that had three senior IT leaders working focused on how IT can be transformed to be a genuine strategic business partner. A look at the reports and advisory sessions that focus on CIO reveals that one of the critical themes that keep on emerging is ‘IT transformation’. This area posses a significant challenge because for one to develop a strategic relationship between the IT and the business will require multifaceted effort for change and adaptation from both the IT and business sides.

Operational excellence

According to the leadership, operational excellence is a result of linking the final IT user’s experience with infrastructure. Some of those customers could be external to internal or the organization in question but are still a factor in determining operational excellence. Ensuring operational excellence in each and every IT aspect eventually helps build an increasing with the business. It is important that operational excellence encompasses all aspects of the very basic delivery within IT and not just infrastructure. It entails delivery of projects on time, have the help desk running to customer’s satisfaction-operational excellence forms the beginning of IT partnership with business.
If a business fails in operational excellence, it may not climb the pyramid to the next level. “If your business is not able to keep the network operational, then no one will be able to listen to your ideas on how to improve their businesses or how to design and redesign their business models. It is therefore important that business do this part so well to be assured of higher value activities.

Business partnership

After operational excellence comes business partnership. It involves building on the foundation operational excellence to achieve collaboration with business to be able to influence decision making in a business. At the business partnership stage, IT is no longer viewed on the basis of being a cost. IT becomes an integral part of the organization that helps add value and thus guarantees a return on the cost. IT looks at the gaps in the business and offers leverage by use of IT technologies to solve business problems. After IT scoring high in operational excellence and value addition, IT can help business with strategic and transformative changes that will see the organization grow. Although IT may want to achieve traditional expectations, the real objective should be on business progress and improvement rather that IT projects.

To accomplish business goals, there is need for IT to collaborate with business. This is because IT cannot control all the aspects of business needed to execute and achieve desired ends. This requires IT to come to the table with business and chart a way out through collaboration and solve problems. Contact the RAY ALLEN team today if we can help you align your IT goals and objectives with the business.