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Pandemic 'improved relationship' between CIOs and other business leaders

(Image credit: Image Credit: Rawpixel / Pixabay)

The pandemic has served to strengthen the relationship between Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and fellow business leaders, according to a new report from analyst house Gartner.

Based on a poll of 58 CIOs, the report explains that the pandemic gave CIOs the platform and opportunity to demonstrate their worth to the wider organization.

Almost three quarters of respondents said they managed to educate CEOs and other senior leaders on the perils of remote working and other topics, while at the same time gaining knowledge of business operations.

“CIOs, in many organizations, were instrumental in dealing with the initial impact of Covid-19. Enterprises continue to operate with a heavy lift from IT organizations, especially in enabling a newly dispersed workforce to work from home," said Andy Rowsell-Jones, Distinguished Research Vice President at Gartner.

"Consequently, many CIOs have a new opportunity to take a seat at the table when senior leaders decide enterprise strategy and which lines of business to ramp up and which ones to reduce."

Rowsell-Jones added that improved engagement levels stemmed from the ability of IT departments to deliver key services in times of need.

The majority (67 percent) of CIOs said they "assumed leadership of high-impact initiatives” during the pandemic - likely referring to the rollout of company-wide remote working.

"However, this goodwill with the CEO will fade quickly unless CIOs can extend it by helping the business deliver on other high-impact initiatives required during the recovery," added Rowsell Jones.

Almost half (43 percent) of CIOs said planning for post-Covid-19 recovery has begun, while more than a third (38 percent) are still dealing with the effect of the pandemic, but will turn their attention to recovery soon.