A complementary relationship
Forrester’s Johnston laments that CIOs and CMOs frequently rely on their own independent resources, most often through a lack of understanding of each other’s roles. This suggests a solution may lie in improved collaboration. The CIO needs to understand the company’s business goals, alongside the requirements of the CMO, while the CMO should appreciate the limits of the technology and the CIO’s budgets. If the budget is too small, a unified proposal for its augmentation will be far more persuasive than either role approaching the board solo.
Moreover, as marketing increasingly relies on AI and machine learning, implementation will require ever greater collaboration. With IDC predicting that the data universe will grow to 175 zettabytes by 2022, how an organization manages data is critical to its ongoing viability. Already we have seen that companies that best manage data – the likes of Netflix, Uber, and Spotify – have grown to dominate their respective markets. This should be a lesson for any who hope to emulate their success.
Thus, Alan Hartstein, contributing writer for CMO by Adobe, sees a fundamental shift in the CIO’s role with an “emergence from the backroom to the epicenter of the strategic decision-making process.” They drive the modernization of platforms to “incorporate artificial intelligence [AI], Internet of Things [IoT], voice, data, and cloud solutions – helping to drive the business forward and make possible innovative customer experiences.”