The revenues on technology investment are increasing in all areas. From Insurance through to Oil and Gas, spending on cyber is becoming an integral part of every industry and several new positions have been created or are being redefined as a strategic and necessary part of the organizational structure to meet that challenge.
Meet the CDOs (Chief Digital Officers), the latest management addition that sits slap bang in your current or upcoming employee budget.
With 60% of CDOs being hired in the past 3 years, we can safely assume that CEOs or Heads of Various departments, no longer want to fulfil this role. PWC's 2018 study showed that EMEA countries are leading the way in appointing CDOs at 38% with North America trailing behind at 23%.
What is a CDO?
We are all managers now.
It seems like everyone is a manager these days and bigger organizations seem to create endless management positions, which might be a sign of:
- The dramatic increase in workload for management positions due to digitalization.
- An increasing refusal to take responsibility over digitalization.
However, the CDO is really a red flag that we all need to update, our systems, our data and its security and our commitment to a brave new technologically driven commercial world, whether we like it or not.
Previously known as a CTO or a CIO, a member of the C-suite, the CDO has oversight over multiple departments, The CDO aligns the business and tech teams in a common vision for data strategies, platforms and at the helm of driving business objectives through digitalization of data, making the CDO a decision-taker in all cyber security issues.
The CDO works with the IT team to apply data protection systems by way of data management, governance and compliance procedures to make sure data is safe, stable and can be used intra- and inter departmentally.
[Cyberhub Summit is Coming back to Atlanta, Ga | October 9-10, 2018 - Cyber Security education for executives and business owners and Powerful Networking. | Get the latest from Cyberhub Summit by signing up for their newsletters. ]
Issues facing the drive towards digitalization in all companies will inevitably come under the belt of the CDO, these range from organizational disruption due to AI to cloud computing. Additionally, they need to kickstart new ideas and projects to maintain the aims of the company.
Ironically a huge issue facing companies is the role of the CDO itself, with many organizations struggling to understand the role of the CDO and other data orientated jobs such as Chief information officer, Chief Analytics officer and the interplay between these different roles and responsibilities.
The CDO effectively defines the cyber culture of any organization. They will effectively blend and collaborate the business and technology reources of companies and utilize data to drive revenues and profit margins.
Given the increasing financial burden of cyber security issues, a deep knowledge of these issues plays a part in any successful CDOs roles and responsibilities.
As the role of CDO becomes increasingly important, the understanding of the boundaries of their authority and sphere of influence, do not move with equal speed. Gartner argues that by 2019, 90% of large global companies will have a CDO but how many companies will know where and how to inculcate this new role, especially as the role itself is changing?
The Perfect CDO
Currently CDO positions are filled by managers with a background in customer service, marketing analytics or technology skills, yet considering how much authority the CDO role has over the security of Company data and the cost of cybersecurity itself, surely those with a background in cyber security would add a great deal to this pivotal role?
The leadership skills required will take individuals well versed in multiple IT skills, cybersecurity being a major one, to competently move companies through the dramatic changes of the digital age.