Perhaps it comes as no surprise, what with the rise of corporate positions such as Chief Analytics Officer and Chief Data Officer, but many CIOs have found themselves less in control of corporate data than they once were -- or thought themselves to be.
Too often, IT -- and the CIO by default -- had become something to work around, not with, in getting at data required for analytics. Department managers or business unit heads have had enough of their own data in hand, plus enough internal business analysts on staff, to undertake their own analytics initiatives. With ready and affordable access to processing power via cloud computing, circumventing the CIO had become child's play for the data-driven line of business (LOB).
CIOs, frustrated as they might be with the realization that they've become roadblocks rather than enablers, have a golden opportunity before them, says IT research firm IDC. That's big data, so much of which lives outside the LOB's purview -- even outside the company itself.
Big data provides the chance for CIOs to create a "holistic, enterprisewide approach to gathering, integrating, and ensuring the integrity of data" -- or, from another view, to wrest back control. It's "creating a new, unique role for the CIO that will contribute directly to organizational success and that is fully appropriate to the CIO function," says IDC in a recently published whitepaper, "The CIO's Chance of a Lifetime: Using Big Data and Analytics as the Ticket to Strategic Relevance." IDC recommends that the CIO take an active role in developing an analytics strategy and establishing IT as the trusted, go-to advisor.
Sponsored by SAS, this site's sponsor, the whitepaper presents findings from four roundtable sessions of IT, LOB, and analytics leaders from around the world, plus results from a global survey of 578 IT, LOB, and analytics managers and executives.