CIOs And The Wall Street Journal - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // CIO Insights & Innovation
Commentary
4/1/2008
04:16 PM
John Soat
John Soat
Commentary
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CIOs And The Wall Street Journal

The financial markets' newspaper of record seems to have taken notice of CIOs. Is it a sign that tech chiefs have finally arrived?

The financial markets' newspaper of record seems to have taken notice of CIOs. Is it a sign that tech chiefs have finally arrived?Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal had an interview with the CIO of Chevron, Gary Masada (You'll need a subscription to read it online; it was on page R6 in the paper.) And recently, the WSJ featured a provocative interview with the CIO of Google, Douglas Merrill.

Both interviews provided interesting and insightful commentary on the role of the CIO and his or her business priorities and challenges. For example, Chevron's Masada said that his biggest challenge is information overload.

We're basically creating the Library of Congress every day or so, which makes finding a piece of information like finding a needle in a haystack. Only that haystack is growing exponentially.

And Google's Merrill talked about how the company's technologists are allowed to pick their own hardware, operating systems, and software.

Google's model is choice. We let employees choose from a bunch of different machines and different operating systems, and [my support group] supports them all. It's a little bit less cost efficient -- but on the other hand, I get slightly more productivity from my [Google's] employees.

It's a good thing that CIOs are being taken seriously by the Wall Street Journal. It allows technology issues to be framed in a business context, which they should be. And it elevates the CIO position to that of a peer with other CXO roles -- CEO, COO, CFO -- which it should be.

I always thought that way. I just didn't know the Wall Street Journal did.

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