skip to main content
Close Icon We use cookies to improve your website experience.  To learn about our use of cookies and how you can manage your cookie settings, please see our Cookie Policy.  By continuing to use the website, you consent to our use of cookies.
Global Search Configuration


This report takes a broad look at the role of the CIO. Many CIOs need to take up the challenge of transforming their role, or face a future in which their relevance to the business continues to decline.


  • A few high-profile CIOs have taken the evolutionary step toward becoming a digital enabler, but many remain stuck in the "tar pit of technology delivery" rather than seizing the expanding opportunity of "change enablement."
  • The process of engagement should be based on this simple maxim: "Talk to anyone who will listen to you and listen to anyone who will talk to you."

Features and Benefits

  • Analyzes the changing role of the CIO and the emergence of the chief digital officer (CDO).
  • Learn how enterprise architecture can help the business.

Key questions answered

  • How can the CIO become a trusted advisor to the business?
  • How can the critical trifecta of cost, risk, and change be balanced to achieve progress?

Table of contents


  • Catalyst
  • Ovum view
  • Key messages

Recommendations for enterprises

  • Identify the scale of the challenge by asking your customers
  • Remember that better than awful is not good
  • Begin the process of changingby listening to your customers
  • Explicitly align your mission with the wider organization
  • Have the courage to terminate zombie projects
  • Get the basics right
  • Create and implement an engagement strategy
  • Get a grip on "digital" – regardless of your title

Recommendations for vendors

  • Make sure your proposition is about more than just technology
  • Help your clients to make the business case
  • Tell a story around business outcomes rather than features

Step up or be sidelined – take action now

  • If you do not take the lead in bringing new technology to your organization, someone else will
  • Use the untapped resource of "misdirected enthusiasm" that manifests as "shadow IT"
  • IT cannot be the source of all innovation – but it can show what is possible
  • Transitioning from barrier to enabler requires significant change

The CIO needs to be a "trusted friend" rather than a "technical superstar"

  • Business users need someone on their side
  • Cloud services need brokers not mechanics

The digital agenda could be the savior of the CIO

  • CIO, CDO, CTO – what's in a title?
  • "Digital" is more than marketing

Enterprise architecture can be a powerful tool to help the business

  • The purpose of enterprise architecture is to achieve business outcomes
  • If your enterprise architecture does not map to business outcomes, do not expect thanks

IT needs to think differently about services

  • The time to start is now


  • Further reading
  • Authors

Recommended Articles

  • Service Provider Markets, Consumer & Entertainment Services,...

    MWC 2018 Highlights

    By Ronan De Renesse 27 Feb 2018

    Over 20 of our senior Ovum analysts and consultants attended this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona at the end of February. In between meetings, briefings and presentations, our analyst team were blogging and tweeting about key developments, trends and rumors. Have a look through our daily MWC 2018 Highlights to find out what happened.

    Topics 5G AI IoT Cloud Payments SDN/NFV Smart home

  • Consumer & Entertainment Services

    US pay TV: Is it facing an existential threat?

    By Adam Thomas 28 Mar 2018

    With US pay TV having endured the worst year in its history, thoughts have inevitably turned to the future. The likelihood remains that the immediate future will remain highly uncomfortable for everyone except the scaled multinational digital platforms.

  • Enterprise Decision Maker, Enterprise IT Strategy and Select...

    2017 Trends to Watch: Big Data

    By Tony Baer 21 Nov 2016

    The breakout use case for big data will be fast data. The Internet of Things (IoT) is increasing the urgency for enterprises to embrace real-time streaming analytics, as use cases from mobile devices and sensors become compelling to a wide range of industry sectors.

    Topics Big data and analytics IoT


Have any questions? Speak to a Specialist

Europe, Middle East & Africa team - +44 (0) 207 017 7700

Asia-Pacific team - +61 (0)3 960 16700

US team - +1 646 957 8878

Email us at

You can also contact your named/allocated Client Services Executive using their direct dial.
PR enquiries - Call us at +44 788 597 5160 or email us at

Contact marketing -

Already an Ovum client? Login to the Knowledge Center now