Across digitally advanced, intermediate and beginner companies, web, mobile cloud and analytics are the leading technologies for maturity in digital strategy, according to Forrester's State of Digital Business 2018 report. While nearly half of advanced companies see the importance of AI and ML technologies, but only 27% of beginner companies agree.
About 86% of more advanced companies say technology plays a crucial part in overall business strategy while only only 46% of beginner businesses agree.
Other C-suite officials like the CEO and CFO are expected to relinquish control over IT departments' ability to "experiment" and invest in new technologies. If CIOs are not granted a degree of freedom to explore emerging tech they could face falling behind competitors digitally, according to the report.
Experimentation in IT is sometimes difficult to justify. However, without enabling the freedom to explore new technologies, CIOs may never get to implement them, and the company can suffer.
A company that thrives on a digital culture is equally as important as a company equipped with modern digital solutions. Business leaders are now forced to initiate digital change. Simply introducing a new technology without any attempts at "nurturing" technical engagement is not improving any productivity.
But before a new technology can be brought in, CIOs must make a case for it. The C-suite often sees the IT department more of a cost-center than a proponent of business strategy. To overcome such a perception, creating a transparent line of communication between the CEO, CFO and CIO is crucial.
CIOs can do this by becoming a "broker of IT services" to showcase how IT can better a company's workforce outside the IT department. With this kind of transparency between IT and the rest of the company, CIOs can successfully pitch ideas to C-suite counterparts.
Business cases accompanied by financial metrics serves as a CIO's guiding light for boardroom pitches. Without them, it's hard for the remainder of the company to see the return on a technical investment.