Telework, cybersecurity, user support, this crisis was a large-scale test for CIOs. Above all, it was revealing, by its breadth and suddenness, of the preponderant role of technology, the mastery of which can be an asset in difficult times.
Crises are revealing, they uncover loopholes and gaps and allow companies to adjust their technological development strategy, measure their degree of preparation and, if necessary, the way that remains to be done to reach the point. of ideal resilience. According to a Cisco survey of CIOs, CIOs have learned from experience. For them, at the end of this crisis, the challenge will be to apply the lessons learned while giving priority to the opportunities available to organizations and to the preparation of this new normal: recruiting new talent, developing new solutions…
“IT has been hard challenged,” says Jacueline Guichelaar CIO at Cisco and whose colleagues interviewed more than 300 CIOs from around the world on how the pandemic has influenced their leadership strategies, their daily stress levels and their prospects. on current and future IT strategies. CIOs recognize that the biggest challenge has been to telecommute their colleagues. This migration had a serious or major impact on the organization for 78% of respondents, who see it as one of the factors that most impacted their organization.
Safety, the biggest stressor
Among the most stressful factors during this period, 80% of CIOs questioned put security first, followed closely by budget management and talent management. In this context of uncertainty and instability imposed by the Covid-19, the bandwidth of VPNs (54%), the decline in productivity (55%), technical breakdowns (44%) are all factors that stressed them out. The survey also highlighted the fundamental role of modern network technologies in helping CIOs and their organizations get through the crisis. In fact, 72% of respondents believe that these technologies have reduced the stress of IT teams.
“The modernization of infrastructures, applications, data security and team empowerment are therefore all subjects to be taken into account in order to face what will follow”, analyze the Cisco experts in their report.
Lessons for future crises
However, the collection of management skills during crises has been considerably enriched for CIOs and their teams. They were able to experiment with full-scale collaboration solutions and set up ad hoc processes to keep the business going. Among the solutions acclaimed throughout this crisis, collaboration tools were essential. The CIO respondents emphasized the importance of regular team meetings by video (86%), unified communication tools allowing faster innovation and iteration (79%) and individual meetings by video (78%).
In sum, CIOs believe that the crisis has been beneficial and now stress how important it is to put in place a long-term strategy regarding procedures, resources and schedules to be ready to face future challenges (65% ). Coming out of this crisis, they consider it important to apply the lessons of the crisis. 88% of CIOs and CTOs agree that their role has expanded to have a big impact on organizations, their business and management teams.
“I am proud of the people who work in the IT industry. CIOs of all types of organizations and their teams have kept almost the entire world active during containment such as the health or education sectorExplains Jacqueline Guichelaar. “Moreover, according to our survey, the CIO Impact Report, 88% of CIOs believe that their role has expanded and has a greater impact in their business and their sector of activity. It is true that this is the right time to digitally transform your organization while reflecting on the impact it can have in your own community and in the world.“