What Exactly Does A CIO Do? - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // CIO Insights & Innovation
Commentary
2/12/2008
05:40 PM
John Soat
John Soat
Commentary
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What Exactly Does A CIO Do?

The reason I ask is because I'm seeing a lot of different job responsibilities connected to the CIO title lately. Is this because the position is changing, or because certain individuals are embracing -- even demanding -- a more critical role?

The reason I ask is because I'm seeing a lot of different job responsibilities connected to the CIO title lately. Is this because the position is changing, or because certain individuals are embracing -- even demanding -- a more critical role?AMC Entertainment, which is responsible for more than 300 movie theaters in Canada, Mexico, and the United States (check your local listings), has hired a new senior VP and CIO, the company said yesterday in a press release. His name is Mike Czinege, and he comes to AMC from Applebee's International, the restaurant franchiser, where he was CIO. Prior to Applebee's, Czinege was a consulting partner with Ernst & Young.

It appears that Czinege doesn't come from a technology background. The press release says he earned bachelor's and master's degrees in business administration from the University of Cincinnati.

AMC included this statement in its press release:

"Adding an exceptional technical leader such as Mike to the AMC team will enhance our company's ability to capitalize on the opportunities in our business, including the deployment of digital technology in our theatres and other related initiatives," said Peter C. Brown, chairman and chief executive officer, AMC Entertainment Inc.

The deployment of digital technology in theaters ("and other related initiatives") is a long way from running the back office IT services of a company, such as the e-mail system or the accounting applications. True, digital technology is the lifeblood of modern media companies, but that doesn't mean that the CIO is necessarily the person in charge of plugging that in to end users like theaters and, ultimately, theater goers.

In a lot of ways, that's a big step up for the CIO position. Not only is Czinege involved in AMC's most important and compelling new business strategies and initiatives, he's also directly responsible for interaction with the company's ultimate end users.

How are your responsibilities changing? Are you more in touch with your company's end users and ultimate consumers?

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