In brief

In brief

  • Our latest point of view reports how CIOs are in the driving seat to deliver digital agendas at scale.
  • We explain why now is the time to shift from simply supporting transformations to enabling and leading technology-driven business models.
  • Equipped with cloud technologies and AI, companies can also develop personalized services and deliver them in real time.
  • Our report highlights five essential technological focus areas to build and sustain a future-driven business and capture future market growth.

CIOs in the spotlight

A mindset shift is underway. Evolving from a technology-enabled business to one with technology at its core is an in-road to digital business models for CIOs.

Recently, a common investment dilemma has challenged CIOs. Fierce market competition shrinks overall IT budgets and monolithic IT systems have high operating and modernization costs. Furthermore, technology-centric innovation keeps an organization competitive and, also, requires significant investments. As part of this shift towards technology-enabled businesses, it is now a CIO’s responsibility to define a steadfast business case for allocating financial resources. Only by doing so can they pave the way for reinvesting in the company’s future.

Laggards vs. leaders

When it comes to tuning an organization for the future, the difference between a laggard and a leader is acuity for digital innovation at scale. For instance, a leader will recognize the value in deploying a company-wide data strategy, designing seamless customer experiences, and orchestrating technology-enabled strategies. They should also be able to think outside the box in terms of organizational boundaries and build an effective ecosystem.

Business agility alone won’t cut it: Our report highlights key competencies for lasting success.

To sustain technology-centric business models, the CIO needs to ramp up capabilities in five specific areas: Agile Enterprise & Product Orientation, Intelligent Platforms & Ecosystems, Data as a Backbone, Opti-Channel Experience and Living System.

COVID-19: The catalyst

The pandemic accelerated the separation of leaders and laggards. It has highlighted a demand for foolproof digital capabilities which can be adapted to reflect fluctuating market conditions. Many leading companies proved that technological foundation was decisive in providing remote work setups, in maintaining operations, and continuing the digital journey.

Given our approach outlined in the report, integrating technology into a company’s core enables true digital innovation: Our digital teams harnessed digital capabilities and worked fluidly to create a reliable contact-tracing app. An MVP was released after just 21 days and over 600,000 downloads were made in the first weeks after going live.

The plan of action

To truly deliver innovation and to enable faster time-to-market, financial flexibility to invest in new technologies and services, and a sustainable company transformation, CIOs should focus on the following five key capabilities.

Agile enterprise & product orientation

Breaking rigid barriers between Business, Digital, and Core IT to form one solid core unit can aid lasting success.

Intelligent platforms & ecosystems

Building effective platforms and ecosystem strategies with change as the designed key capability.

Data as a backbone

To leverage data science, machine learning, and AI, as well as bring in the right people to make the most of investment is the job of proactive CIOs.

Opti-channel experiences

Opti-channel strategies ensure customers get the right message at the right time, through their preferred communication channel.

Living systems

Modernization of legacy systems is a basis for reinvention. Living Systems enable and multiply innovation and value at scale and drive business growth.

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The power is in their hands

In this ever-changing business landscape, it is imperative that CIOs adopt skills, tools, and the mindset to enable a company’s IT transformation. In doing so, not only can they propel the organization above the competition – they can position themselves as genuine digital leaders as well.

About the Authors

Daniel Behar

Managing Director – Accenture Technology Strategy, Deutschland

Marcel Spillmann

Managing Director – Switzerland

Ingo Dyrbusch

Technology Strategy & Advisory

Emanuel Bächtiger

Business Agility Advisory

Julius Stern

Technology Strategy & Advisory

Paulo Schmid

Business Agility Advisory


Delivering on the promise of sustainability
Accenture positioned as leader in digital business transformation services
Pivot value with Living Systems

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