Info-Tech Research Group, one of the top information technology and research advisory firms globally, has published its annual CIO Priorities for the coming year. The CIO Priorities 2022 report combines insights from the recently released 2022 Tech Trends Report to help CIOs better compete in the digital economy and support their organizations through change.
“In the CIO Priorities 2022 report, we’re looking at how to set priorities to compete in the digital economy and support the organization through a dynamic period of change,” explains Brian Jackson, Research Director and lead analyst for the report. “This report will help CIOs understand how to balance everything that’s on their plate and become inspired with case studies that show once you make the commitment, successful outcomes are possible.”
Info-Tech’s annual CIO Priorities are based on proprietary, primary data and consultation with experts with CIO experience, as well as insights from related industry reports that the firm releases throughout the year. The CIO Priorities 2022 report also includes insights in the form of exclusive podcast audio, quotes, and case studies from experts at Harvard Business School, Cross Country Mortgage, Allianz Technology, and CVS Health, to name a few.
“CIOs bear a greater burden than ever after the pandemic,” adds Jackson. “They’ve facilitated new remote work scenarios and now must adapt to a hybrid operating model. Talent is at an all-time premium, so staff retention is crucial, and there’s more pressure to automate more tasks. At the same time, CIOs face a severe cybersecurity threat in ransomware and new compliance pressures from investors and governments.”
Five Priorities from Info-Tech’s 2022 CIO Priorities Report:
A priority is created when external factors hold strong synergy with internal goals, and an organization responds by committing resources to either avert risk or seize the opportunity.
The top five priorities Info-Tech’s research has indicated should be top of mind for CIOs and tech leaders are outlined below:
- Reduce Friction in the Hybrid Operating Model. CIOs will need to work through new pain points related to the friction of collaboration. In 2020, CIOs adapted to the pandemic’s disruption to offices by investing in capabilities to enable remote work. In 2022 and beyond, the focus shifts to solving problems created by the new hybrid operating model where some employees are in the office and some are working remotely.
- Improve Your Ransomware Readiness. The ransomware crisis threatens every organization, and prevention alone is insufficient. Cybersecurity is always top of mind for CIOs but tends to be deprioritized due to other demands related to digital transformation or cost pressures. Going forward, organizations should look beyond multilayer prevention strategies and lean toward quick detection and response, spending evenly across prevention, detection, and response solutions.
- Support an Employee-Centric Retention Strategy. The report cautions that organizations can avoid being victims of “The Great Resignation” by putting employees at the center of an experience that will engage them with clear career path development, purposeful work, and transparent feedback. Professional development and opportunity for innovative work are the next two most common reasons for resignations and signal another area for CIOs to focus on over the coming months. Organizations must ensure they create enough capacity to allow workers time to spend on development.
- Design an Automation Platform. Build it or buy it, platform integration can yield great benefits. Digital transformation accelerated during the pandemic, and most organizations became more digitalized as formerly manual processes became automated through software. But how they pursue it depends on their IT maturity.
- Prepare to Report on New Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Metrics. The risks posed to organizations and broader society are becoming more severe, driving a transition from voluntary frameworks for ESG goals to a mandatory one that’s enforced by investors and governments. Organizations will be expected to tie their core activities to a defined set of ESG goals and maintain a balance sheet of their positive and negative impacts. CIOs should become experts in ESG disclosure requirements and recommend to the business the steps needed to meet or exceed competitors’ efforts.
For each of the priorities for the coming year, the report examines how CIOs are responding by referencing survey data and panel interviews.