How CIOs and CMOs Can Work Together Better

By Karen A. Frenkel  |  Posted 07-28-2014 Email Print this article Print

The CIO-CMO relationship is one of the worst in the C-suite, according to a new study by PwC. Its "6th Annual Digital IQ Survey" finds that only 51 percent of respondents say this critical C-level relationship is strong. These companies are at a marked disadvantage as those with strong C-suite partnerships are 2.4 times more likely to be top performers. "Many consumer-facing industries show average or below-average relationships, possibly indicating a more palpable CIO-CMO tension where digital marketing is at the forefront," according to the PwC report. Respondents say 47 percent of their company's IT spend is outside of the CIO's budget, which has lead to some debate over whether marketing organizations will outdo IT departments in spending power in the near future. The real issue, however, is not budgets but digital investments across the C-suite, according to the report, which surveyed 1,494 IT and business leaders from 36 countries. And in some companies, sales and marketing leaders are investing in cloud-hosted services without consulting the IT department, resulting in potentially dangerous shadow IT. To access the report, click here

  • Close the CIO-CMO Digital Divide

    There is a tech disconnect between CIOs and CMOs. 38% of CMOs site old technology as the biggest barrier to delivering on digital initiatives, for example.
    Close the CIO-CMO Digital Divide
  • CIOs and CMOs Need to be in Sync

    It's critical for IT and marketing departments to cultivate a strong partnership. Otherwise, marketing may seek out third parties or create their own technology chiefs.
    CIOs and CMOs Need to be in Sync
  • Educate the Marketing Department

    CIOs should try to cultivate outside-in learning so that colleagues see their department as a resource for evaluating new technologies.
    Educate the Marketing Department
  • Beware of Entrenched Processes and Operating Models

    For a more balanced digital capability in which both IT and business bring skills and knowledge to the table, work together to deliver a digital strategy.
    Beware of Entrenched Processes and Operating Models
  • Real Collaboration Leads to Goals and Metrics

    53% of companies say their organization has a common roadmap of their business strategy. But CIOs and CMOs don't agree on operationalizing that roadmap. Get explicit agreement as to who owns what initiative, their roles and how to measure success.
    Real Collaboration Leads to Goals and Metrics
  • Rethink IT's Role

    Redefine the way digital capabilities are designed to ensure that the right decision-makers and skill sets are engaged in developing ideas, designing, planning, estimating and sourcing.
    Rethink IT's Role
  • Try Agile Approaches

    Only 29% of organizations say they use agile processes on half of their projects, yet agile processes can promote adaptive planning, evolutionary development and delivery, an iterative approach, and encourage rapid and flexible response to change.
    Try Agile Approaches
Karen A. Frenkel writes about technology and innovation and lives in New York City.


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