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The best-performing CIOs do not necessarily focus on technology, but rather on leadership, customer goals, employees and other business functions. This is the conclusion of research by ServiceNow, conducted by Oxford Economics among 516 CIOs worldwide.

Although CIOs have focused on technology for many years, 63 percent of them now believe that business and leadership skills are more important than technological knowledge.

Differentiated from the rest

One fifth of CIOs who say they have the most important skills for their job say they also distinguish themselves from the rest on three points. This group claims to be at the forefront when it comes to digitising workflows, to have an influence in the boardroom and to have an external focus on customers.

It also appears that the best-performing CIOs focus on strategy and not, or to a lesser extent, on processes. Furthermore, they focus less on linking IT objectives with business objectives.

The CIOs also report more productivity, innovation and customer satisfaction in their organization. Moreover, they have the best relationship with other leaders. This mainly concerns the CEO and the chief human resources officer (CHRO).

Collaborations are important

Respondents also stated that collaborations and team-transcending projects at board level are an important part of their role. For example, 69 per cent consider working with the CEO to make plans for the organisation to be crucial to their role. 77% also consider it important to work with CHRO on talent strategies.

In addition, 64% say they think they should teach other executives about digital technologies.


Of course, CIOs are also often concerned with technological responsibilities. The most successful CIOs are involved in automating and integrating work processes from a technological perspective. They also introduce digital workflows to improve results.

80 percent believe that digital workflows are important to improve efficiency. According to 78 percent, these digital workflows are important for financial performance and productivity. Digital workflows are also important for employee performance (76 percent) and innovation (75 percent).

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.