Being the person with the CIO job is hard work. You try and you try and you try to do a good job but it always seems like you are somehow falling further and further behind. There is so much work to do in regards to the importance of information technology that you only dream of being able to do all of the things that you should be doing in order to make your IT department as good as it could be.
In cases like this, it might be helpful to take a look around in the world of high-tech and see if there is anyone who is getting all of this stuff correct. Does anyone know how to run things correctly?
It turns out that the answer is yes – Adobe.
As the person with the CIO job, one of your main tasks is to assign work to the various people who work for you. As the number of people grows and the amount of work that has to be done seems to get even larger, this task that once upon a time appeared to be simple, can quickly get out of hand.
Over at those fancy new startup companies that like to refer to themselves as being part of the “gig economy”, they believe in the importance of information technology and have started to use both apps and algorithms to assign tasks to the self employed workers that they use.
Is this something that you should be doing?
CIOs at banks have a great deal to worry about. Simply because their companies have so much valuable data and money, the bad guys are always trying to break in and steal things.
As though this wasn’t bad enough, every bank is connected to every other bank. What this means is that if something bad happened to a connected bank, then your bank could also suffer.
In order to prevent doomsday scenarios like this from happening, the people in the bank CIO position have come up with a plan.
So CIO, are you a good manager? I suspect that most of us think that we are. However, over at the Gallop company they have just completed a survey of managers. What they discovered is that only one in 10 people actually possesses the talent to manage others. Ouch!
This magical 10 percent who have what it takes to be a good manager frequently realize 48 percent greater profitability, 22 percent greater productivity, 17 percent greater employee engagement, 5 percent greater customer engagement, and 19 percent less turnover according to Gallup.
Are you one of the 10%? Do you have the 5 talents that every person with the CIO job needs?
Let’s face it, when it comes to money, people can quickly become very greedy. When you take a look at institutions like the American stock market, the potential for people to do a large number of things that they really should not do becomes very large.
In order to keep things under control and make sure that everyone behaves themselves, the government created the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This organization has the responsibility to watch over all stock and option trading and make sure that nobody is doing anything that they should not be doing.
This all sounds like a good idea, but what should the SEC’s CIO do when they are the ones who get hacked?
One of the most important jobs that the person with the CIO job has is to keep the company’s networks and data secure. This means that they are responsible for implementing systems and procedures that will keep the bad guys out.
We purchase and implement products that require our users to correctly identify themselves before they are permitted to access important company resources. So far these systems seem to be working fairly well – the bad guys have not been able to guess how to defeat our security measures.
However, with the arrival of quantum computing this may all change. What do CIOs need to do in order to get ready?
Just in case you’ve been living under a rock for a while, you may not be aware of this thing that is being called the “internet of things” (IOT). What people are talking about when they talk about IOT is the growing number of devices that can be connected directly to the Internet.
In a typical work environment this can include everything from copy machines, fax machines, coffee machines, and even video cameras.
There are a lot of benefits that come from this connectivity; however, at the same time the person in the CIO position need to become very aware of the downsides that are associated with tying all of these devices to the internet.
Securing the company’s data is one of the primary jobs of the CIO. As the importance of information technology grows and more and more of our data moves into the cloud, keeping that data out of the hands of hackers is becoming a bigger and bigger issue.
As CIOs go looking for solutions to this problem, what they are discovering is that perhaps the perfect solution already exists. Like maybe it was created back in the 1950s.
Yes, I’m talking about storing your precious data on magnetic tape once again.
I think that we can all agree that keeping the company’s network secure is one of the CIO's most important tasks. However, no matter how many firewalls we put in place or how effectively we implement two-factor authentication we still need to understand the weakest link in our security system: our employees.
What this means for a CIO is that we are responsible for training our staff to not make silly security mistakes. How best to go about doing this?
We had better come up with a good solution otherwise all of the fancy security tools in the world won’t be keeping the bad guys out.
If you were the CIO of a major bank responsible for the importance of information technology, what do you think that your #1 job responsibility would be? If you are guessing “keep the bank’s systems secure” then good news, you’d be close, but you’d still be missing the point.
It turns out that a bank’s CIO’s most important job is ensuring that the people who have trusted the bank with their money are able to both see and access it.
Over at the major American bank, Wells Fargo, their CIO has just dropped the ball and their IT systems were down for two days. This means that people could not access their money. Not a good scenario.