I have an interesting call with Ken McGee, VP and Gartner Fellow, yesterday who focuses on CIOs and not BPM. We met at the Gartner BPM conference where he delivered an excellent, thought provoking keynote on the Why BPM and BI have strong future together. He was researching how the role of the CIO was changing to be measured by “revenue generation” rather than “keeping the lights on” and this was a key theme of his keynote.

He wanted to tak to Nimbus because we are having great success with very tangible project ROIs  e.g. Carphone Warehouse Best Buy ROI was 1100%. He was interested if this was valuable data in his “CIO driven by value” research. Sadly he left the discussion empty handed interms of CIO data, but we both discovered an interesting insight.

The challenge with BPM when seen through the eyes of the CIO is that it is an automation technology to be installed. If you look through the eyes of the senior business transformation sponsor (COO, VP Business Operations, Hd of Business Excellence, VP Business Transformation…) then they look at BPM as a major transformation approach, where IT plays a supporting role. These individuals ARE motivated by how BPM can drive up revenues as well as improve efficiency.

What came out of the conversation is that the future CIO will not have a career path that comes up through IT, but will have a financial, product or operational background. The leading search and recruitment firms are seeing that when they are being asked to recruit CIOs, having a technical or computing background is not mandatory. What their clients is asking for is a strong business knowledge and how IT can help the business.

So the BPM sponsors or champions, our clients, are the potential CIOs of the future.

When the CIO has a change of focus (career direction, measurement, remuneration) from IT to business then BPM will gather greater momentum and remove many of the barriers to successful transformation.

Maybe when I say “We don’t sell to the CIO”, I should be saying “We don’t sell to the current CIO”.

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