The role of chief information officer could disappear within 10 years, as in future all senior board members will have to be equally adept at handling information.
That was the view of J P Rangaswami, CIO of Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein, in an opening keynote presentation at last week's Triple i Convention.
"It is only a matter of time until every 'C' level officer needs to have the same level of information as the CIO," he said.
Rangaswami suggested that in 10 years' time, if an organisation had a CIO it would suggest that the rest of the board has abdicated responsibility for information to that person. "There will be a CIO of sorts but it won't be the same as today," he said.
There would be a role for a chief technology officer, he said, which would be similar to the current CTO role in technology supplier companies, which involves laying down a core technology strategy. The IT discipline will not go away, but will be diffused throughout the business. "There will be IT graduates in sales, marketing and design, rather than in IT," said Rangaswami.
As for the present, he said the main thing the CEO wants from the CIO is peace. It is a deduction drawn from conversations with 35 CEOs in various organisations.
"The CEO wants the IT department to be seen, not heard. He wants it to work like clockwork, so he can spend his time making money, and with clients." But the CEO cannot do this unless he understands what he spends on technology and what he gets back, and that is the CIO's responsibility, said Rangaswami.
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