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CEOs put the big heat on CIOs. (Economy).

It looks like chief executives are intensifying the pressure on their CIOs to perform, and what a wonderful thing it is.

According to a survey of 620 CIOs conducted late last year by Gartner Executive Programs, based in Stamford, Conn., CIOs are feeling severe pressure to accelerate innovation at the same time that they're being forced to operate under tighter budget constraints. On top of that, they're under pressure to improve security and risk management, for obvious reasons.

"Being more cost-effective, reducing business risk and innovating faster are extremely difficult to achieve concurrently," says Ellen Kitzis, group vice president for Gartner EXP, a unit of Gartner.

Taken as a whole, these new pressures are changing the role of the CIO. Those who fail to adapt to the new environment will find themselves at a dead end.

The survivors are discovering that rather than managing their budgets as separate fiefdoms, they have to build bridges to the rest of the business and demonstrate the value of what they do, Kitzis says. CIOs are discovering that they have to work with their C-level colleagues to inform and manage their expectations, so that these executives understand the trade-off choices and take joint responsibility.

"IT governance is about ensuring the right people are making the right decisions for the business and being held accountable," Kitzis says. "CIOs have to be multilingual and act as the pivot point: achieving business goals through informed decision-making, implementation and accountability."

Multilingual--meaning they actually have to learn how to communicate with CEOs? And they have to be accountable? Beautiful thoughts, indeed.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:survey of Chief Information Officers; Chief Executive Officers
Publication:Chief Executive (U.S.)
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2003
Previous Article:Get a piece of IBM's mind. (Business).
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