The world’s chief information officers (CIOs) will need to develop new management skills if they’re to continue driving innovation for their respective businesses in the coming years, experts have claimed.

According to new research from Gartner, more than three quarters (76 per cent) of IT bosses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) feel they’ll need to focus more on leadership if they’re to fully embrace the digital shift currently affecting their organisations.

As part of the study, analysts questioned 2,800 CIOs across the EMEA region, information-age.com reports. They found that, while many said they knew things had to change, most admitted not being ready to face the expected challenges just yet.

Gartner’s results also show that more than one fifth of IT spending is now dictated by executives outside of the IT department, with this figure set to grow even further in the coming years. The vice-president of Gartner Executive Programs, Graham Waller, thinks that CIOs will need to spend more time with the rest of the C-suite if they’re to properly adapt.

He was quoted by it-online.co.za as saying: “We found that CIOs with higher performance as IT leaders appoint a deputy responsible for running the whole IT shop day to day.

“This gives them an extra 5 per cent of time (a day per month), to engage with the board, senior leadership and external customers. In EMEA, 51 per cent of CIOs have such a deputy.”

Author: Graeme Parton