The Role of the CIO 2003: Are Budget Pressures Overwhelming You?
21% of top IT executives left business posts to become CIOs
49%: the amount of their time CIOs spend on business issues
55%: the amount of their time CIOs wish they could spend on business issues
22% of CIOs cite "cost and budget pressures" as their top frustration
It's been another tough year for CIOs. Money is tight, budget pressures are high and the strategic imperative appears to be waning somewhat. The result: CIOs overwhelmingly agree they found 2002 more difficult than the previous yearwhich wasn't so hot either. This month's CIO Insight survey of close to 400 CIOs on their background, roles and priorities reveals a growing tension between CIOs' strategic aspirations and the bean-counting reality. Helping their companies realize their business strategies remains the top evaluation criteria for CIOs, and aligning IT with business needs is still the top priority, in the view of both CIOs and their bosses. But 40 percent of CIOs say their bosses view managing costs as one of their primary roles, while less than 20 percent view cost management as a primary role for themselves. Most notably, leadership skills replaced business understanding this year as the most important personal attribute required for success as a CIO, suggesting just how critical it is to be able to successfully guide corporations' IT efforts through the rapids of economic volatility, business demands and technological complexity.