As a CIO, you probably think your job is safe and secure, secure in the knowledge that you are contributing to the efficiencies and core business goals of the company you work for. But does your CEO feel the same way?

Things are changing in our industry and more and more CEO’s are looking for ways to save on costs – and one way they are doing this is to reduce overheads.

With temporary CIO services becoming more of a norm than a ‘nice to have’, CIOs need to look at ways to prove to their companies that they are worth the dollars.

Sure, you’ve spent the last few years standardising, optimising and consolidating your company’s IT operations, yet the main focus for businesses is not on IT efficiencies anymore, it’s on increasing revenue and creating customer engagement that will lead to long-term loyalty.

At industry functions, we’ve heard CEO’s, CMO’s, procurement heads and other high level executives say that they are looking for innovation, and that this seems to be coming from areas such as marketing, sales and R&D – why would they spend money on a CIO when these funds can be directed to areas that are making a difference to the businesses bottom line?


It’s About Diversification

To make sure you’re still relevant, it’s time to diversify your skill base and show how you can be innovative as a CIO. Your aim over the next few months should be to replace the ‘I’ in CIO with ‘Innovation’.

So how do you go about doing this? For starters, it might be time to consider your career options where you currently are. Maybe a change in sector could be a good idea? Or maybe you could consider turning your skills into a consultancy type business, where you could work with many different organisations and make a difference in many companies, rather than just working in the one place.

Being an on call CIO is a great career move. You’ll be able to show case how you can increase user engagement, how you understand cloud platforms, social and mobile technologies and how these can be applied in a business situation.

Your delivery goals will be about value, not budget, and you’ll be able to increase speed and customer satisfaction within each business you work with.

It’s time to wake up and consider your options as a CIO – maybe you can stay where you are and continue to develop and grow, or maybe it’s time for a change.

No matter what you decide to do, you can no longer leave your head in the ground, blissfully unaware – the IT world is changing – the question is, are you prepared to change with it?