Survey: 2014 brings challenges, wind shift for CIOs

Innovation is a considerable area of focus for many chief information officers in government, so much that many agencies have created a special role just for it. Enter the chief innovation officer.

According to CIO Magazine’s 2014 State of the CIO survey, innovation is within the top five most-frequently cited priorities for CIOs.

However, this area has proved to be challenging. Fewer than half of the CIOs surveyed have a well-defined process for innovation, and 37 percent say they are asked to be innovative, but are unclear or how to do so.

More so, 68 percent of respondents believe it’s hard to balance innovation and operational excellence.


Titled “The Great Schism: Digital Strategist or Traditional CIO,” the survey was based off input from 722 CIOs from various organizations.

The survey also shone a light on what CIOs are keeping a pulse on in the coming year. Here are some of those highlights:

  • The role of the CIO is becoming more important to the business, according to 86 percent of respondents. Simultaneously, 90 percent said it was also becoming a more challenging gig.
  • In 2013, the average tenure of a CIO was 5 years, nine months, and in 2014 it will be two months longer than that, according to the report. (The average tenure of a government CIO is about 18 months.)
  • Looking at the 2014 agenda, the three priorities the respondents identified were improving the use of data and analytics, supporting business and marketing goals, and improving IT project delivery.

Read the complete survey here.

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