Thursday, May 10, 2018

Can CIOs Create “Blue Ocean” to Run a Digital Business

 Ideally, IT should create and swim in the blue ocean with the right speed, to foresee, discover, and anticipate business needs for information and then prepare and lead change effortlessly.

Now, Information is permeating into every corner of the business and IT is impacting so many business activities at the organization, CIOs can no longer hide in the corner to run an isolated organization, they need to have a holistic view of the business from a senior business leader’s perspectives and to provide the added value of abundance of information and emerging business technologies. More importantly, they should create or explore the “blue ocean” to run a highly innovative digital business.

Evolve digital IT organization to ride the learning curve to get digital ready: Forward-looking organizations across the industries empower CIOs to lead changes. The best CIOs must devote their time and energy, understand the business as well as what emerging technology trend can add business value and accelerate business performance. They should be excellent at articulating the benefits of making changes to the business’ operating model, underlying processes, and showing how IT can make these change happen. In a dynamic business world where practically every aspect of nearly every business across sectors, as mundane and detached from IT, either sales or finance, is wholly dependent on IT to a high degree, information is in fact, the lifeblood of the digital business, the unprecedented digital convenience brought by digital technologies change how we think and work, improve productivity and inspire innovation. For CIOs, that means being tactical IT manager is simply not enough, they should be equipped with the digital mindset, become strategic business executive to run IT flawlessly and reinvent IT at the prevailing level of sophistication.

IT can no longer feel like it has a monopoly on delivering solutions to the business due to fierce competitions and on-demand services provided by the third party: To survive and thrive, IT shouldn’t be just commodity, it has to become the differentiated advantage of the business. Business and IT need to focus more on being objective in approaches and allow for the ever-changing markets and environment. IT has to look at itself first, improve its own agility and effectiveness, simplify the way it does things, from controlling to enabling, allow for the element of ultimate control to be released in order for the change to take effect. To become the trustful business partner, CIOs should work with the business on plugging revenue leakages, contributing to new revenue generation, supplying differentiated business solutions to exceed the customers' expectation. The hardcore of IT is becoming more and more ubiquitous and as a result, IT leaders and professionals need to be extremely open-minded because they are the “brainpower” behind digitalization and they are the change agents who can advocate the new way to do things scientifically, empower internal customers with the right information, efficient platforms & tools, delight end customers, and influence the culture of learning and innovation.

A strategic CIO creates a blue ocean and changing the dynamics of the business enterprise: From reacting to changes to proactively driving changes, a strategic CIO is changing the dynamics of the enterprise by refining information and leveraging technology for the strategic advantage. Innovation happens at the intersection of business and technology, a strategic CIO can create or explore the blue ocean for spotting unique opportunities to increase business revenues or beat the fierce competition effortlessly. Therefore, IT leaders must understand the revenue model and realize how IT supports that model and transforms IT from a cost center to value creator. Like any other business initiative from another part of the company, developing a compelling strategic business case is especially critical when a business initiative is difficult to monetize. That is, attach believable dollar values to identified benefits flows. Further, to swim in the blue ocean for discovering hidden treasures, looking for business solutions which will directly benefit the external end customer will improve business competency and in-turn bring in increased revenue; and diving deeper to work closely with senior executives for developing new digital enabled business models and creating the new revenue streams.

In the world moves too fast and marketing, finance, technology, leadership are all intertwined. Ideally, IT should discover and swim in the blue ocean with the right speed. CIOs have to be well-rounded to succeed as the senior executive. It's good to see leading corporation embracing CIOs and their IT teams as business partners. The CIO has to foresee, anticipate business needs for information and then prepare and lead change effortlessly.


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