Will the Chief Data Officer become the Big Data Officer?


According to a recent study by research agency Loudhouse, 61% of CIOs believe that their company must appoint a Chief Data Officer to the board within the next 12 months.

This is because the CIO role cannot adequately cope with the shift in priority from data as a commodity to data as an enabler. [Tweet this]

92% think that a CDO role must be created to define data strategy and take responsibility for data quality. The typical CIO simply cannot cope with the demands of the data driven business added on to their existing responsibiities.

Given the relatively early state of adoption of BIg Data in South Africa I ws surprised to see the rise of Big Data cited as the biggest
reason why CIOs are floundering, wth 44% of CIO’s believing that that the CDO is needed to capitalise on big data opportunites. In fact, gorwing volumes of data are cited as a major obstacle to managing and using data effectively.

While Big Data may be raising the visibility of data, and can indeed add value, the Chief Data Officer is in no danger of becoming the Big Data Officer. [Tweet this]

In fact, the biggest difference between the traditional CIO and the CDO is the ability of the latter to properly understand the business impact of data – whether for anaytics or operational purposes.

The CDO role must define data strategy to ensure that business goals are met. He must take ownership of data quality and set up the data governance structures that ensure allignment between data management, business and IT.

Big data may have a role to play in meeting corporate objectives such as an improved customer experience. But so do small data iniatives such as improving customer data quality and enhancing the 360 degree view of all interactions in the CRM system. The CDO is the person that must bring these initiatives (and others) together to ensure the best possible investment in data to meet business goals.

Does your organisation have a Chief Data Officer? What were the primary reasons he or she was employed?

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