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Millennials want to be digital entrepreneurs, not CIOs

Clint Boulton | April 11, 2016
Despite the rising popularity in digital transformations, one college professor says his students want no part of the CIO role, let alone IT.

That is a salient point. Nearly every company is facing challenges as it transitions to the digital age, whether it's how to get their new mobile app working as well on a tablet or smartphone, or how to normalize the data they've just dumped into their new data warehouse. Such tasks, part of broader digital transformations in which CIOs are migrating to code existing business processes, are well under way at most Fortune 500 firms. We've yet to see the fruits of those labors because these projects, which require senior managers and the rank-and-file to pull together in one direction, take several years.

Davenport says that some CIOs are making game-changing moves for their companies, pointing to Intel’s Kim Stevenson and former Procter & Gamble CIO Filippo Passerini. But he says such CIOs who can not only complete such transformations but recognize a return on investment from them are in short supply.

“There certainly are some visionary CIOs but not nearly enough of them and I don’t think the job is as desirable as it used to be," Davenport says. “I don’t think [the CIO role] going away anytime soon. I would just like to see it revitalized by more vision, more business change.”


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