What the CDO will bring to the table

by Darinia Khongwir    Jul 31, 2013

IT Professional

The Chief Digital Officer or the CDO is a relatively new abbreviation in CXO parlance. The new C-level executive is predominately charged with ensuring that the companies’ exhaustive resources in digital content are being used effectively to connect with customers and drive revenue growth.

It has been observed that most CIOs do not take the responsibility on information policy. As a result of this enterprises will look to the CDO to fill this gap. Partha Iyengar, country manager for Research, India at Gartner observes that the appointment of a CDO often relates to an awakening within the organization’s senior leadership of the importance of information management and the current lack of ownership and focus on it.


Gartner last year reported that by 2015 some 25 percent of companies will have one managing their digital goals. While media companies are at the forefront of this movement, Mark P McDonald, Gartner’s research analyst, says all kinds of organizations are starting to see value in their digital assets and in how those assets can help grow revenue.

“I think everybody’s asking themselves whether they need [a CDO] or should become one,” McDonald says. “Organizations are looking for some kind of innovation or growth, and digital technologies are providing the first source of technology-intensive growth that we’ve had in a decade.”

Why the need for a CDO? 

While the CIO and the CDO are both concerned with digital information, their responsibilities diverge sharply. Enterprises are striving to manage data from various sources–from social media, internet of things, inexpensive sensors and many more. Experts believe enterprise data demands to be managed with the same diligence just like other enterprise assets to gain business insight. While many organizations are increasingly realizing this, very few businesses however, are equipped to methodically exploit this plethora of data types and translate that knowledge into meaningful business insight. Even fewer have the dedicated thought leaders to effectively manage their information and data assets. Experts believe that companies need a CDO who can be the champion of enterprise data and can provide the leadership required to effectively manage data assets.

“The role of IT in the past has been to procure and secure IT equipment for the company, lock [data] up and bolt it down,” says Jason Brown, the CDO for trade show and event management company George Little Management. “Whereas with digital content, you want to get it out to the world so the rest of the world can see it and access it. I don’t care about Exchange servers, Web servers or any of that stuff,” continues Brown, who was hired in September 2011 as George Little’s first-ever CDO, reporting to the company’s CEO.

Organizations including Sears, Starbucks, Harvard University, the City of New York and many others have hired CDOs, says David Mathison, founder of the Chief Digital Officer Club, where current and would-be CDOs can find training, job opportunities and more. Their goal? To improve efforts in digital content promotion, a motive shared by CDOs from Forbes, Columbia University and elsewhere, who described to Computerworld how they go about helping their companies take advantage of their large digital resources.

According to estimates from CDO Club founder David Mathison, the top three kinds of companies hiring CDOs today are advertising agencies, publishers and broadcasters, while the biggest growth is being seen in the non-profit sector and state and local governments.

What’s driving the evolution of the CDO?

Social media and the enabling technologies are fundamentally reshaping how consumers behave. Smarter, quicker and more advanced mobile telephony brings with it a wide range of possibilities for business such as media companies, retailers and information providers. Services that combine social and local elements are becoming the norm. All of this is forcing organizations to rethink their market and customer strategies. Russell Reynold Associates reports that the deluge of information from smartphones, social media and the rising number of app users will be behind the rise of the CDO.

What does the future hold for the CDO?


In many cases, the CDO will be the senior executive handling the fastest growing revenue streams within the business or will be the executive holding the keys to the company’s future—placing him or her squarely in line to replace the CEO. CDOs who demonstrate their ability to manage change and transform their businesses almost certainly will lead the way in the rise of the Digital CEO. 

Your say
Sign in to post a comment, or Sign up for an account.
Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates.
... 24 Apr 2014, Harry
Having passed through this, we stand stronger in ourselves and are more whole. A nervous system upgrade (Reboot). Confidence through hard won experience. At last we are demonstrating that we are ready for the next stage in our development. how to fix your relationship ... 23 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Photographers in OahuThis is a very good tips especially to those new to blogosphere, brief and accurate information… Thanks for sharing this one. A must read article. ... 22 Apr 2014, Jackdon
it’s really nice and meanful. it’s really cool blog. Linking is very useful thing.you have really helped lots of people who visit blog and provide them usefull information.Kapalua Photographer ... 22 Apr 2014, Jackdon
wow, great, I was wondering how to cure acne naturally. and found your site by google, learned a lot, now i’m a bit clear. I’ve bookmark your site and also add rss. keep us updated…. Orangevale home inspection ... 21 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
Onlinershub.com is an All-in-One Internet Marketing site where professional and newbie onliners meet and discuss ideas and the latest tips and strategies on how to make money online from your finger tips. Learn about the latest trends in Internet Marketing, an online job money making system that has been adopted by most successful Internet Marketers… Top Best Internet Marketing Strategies ... 20 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
This Website is one of the most visited sex toys and lingerie online shop in Singapore. We will always offer you the best pricing we can. We are constantly working to cut our customers cost as much as we can… sex toy ... 20 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Adult sex toys online store in Singapore. Wide range of sex toy and lingerie products. sex toy ... 20 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Hi I found your site by mistake when i was searching yahoo for this acne issue, I must say your site is really helpful I also love the design, its amazing!. I don’t have the time at the moment to fully read your site but I have bookmarked it and also add your RSS feeds. I will be back in a day or two. thanks for a great site.
find out this here
... 20 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
Retal pos for business in Singapore. Wide range of point of sale premium pos system for your business. point of sale ... 19 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Experience a tantalizing variety of wine clubs designed to suite every taste. Every month, our wine experts scour the globe in search of amazing wines to ship directly to our wine club members. Choose your club below to begin your Cellar’s Wine Club journey! online wine gifts ... 18 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Wedding Photographer HawaiiI simply want to tell you that I am new to weblog and definitely liked this blog site. Very likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You absolutely have wonderful stories. Cheers for sharing with us your blog. ... 17 Apr 2014, Jackdon
Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates.
snel geld verdienen online
... 16 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
The electric car is quiet, highly efficient and cheaper price kilometers. Today it is to get the different characteristics of electric vehicles that can be rented or purchased. suitable for city driving smaller cars and original designs, the road is better to fly higher… electric car ... 13 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Branding DenverThis is cool post and i enjoy to read this post. your blog is fantastic and you have good staff in your blog. nice sharing keep it up. ... 12 Apr 2014, Jackdon
“This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog. ” Acne ... 12 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
Most Singaporean visited online jobs portal in Singapore. Find or search for Singapore jobs online, find resumes or post submit jobs for employer. jobs ... 11 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Once I thought about things like: why such information is for free here? Because when you write a book then at least on selling a book you get a percentage. Thank you and good luck on informing people more about it!
... 11 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
It was great to see the old printshop and everyone who works there again. I am excited to see a printing business still operating and growing, great job guys
... 11 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates. kontorimööbel ... 11 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
A nutrition that is definitely bettering our health and our children’s health. Complete organic nutrition from A-Z, 92+ nutrients. There is nothing missing from the equation. Cell level delivered nutrition. There isn’t a product base out there that can touch this. I have researched this to be absolutely true… zija ... 9 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Interior planning is a topic that you may feel you need to possess certain skills to utilize it effectively. You might be surprised by how much the Internet and design magazines can help you. Continue on to… Home Improvement Tips ... 9 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
A new internet marketing product million hits secret. While it is a new product, people are talking about it as if it has been around for awhile. However, very few people really know what it is and how it works. All they say is that it is a website that you can earn money on the internet even when you are fast asleep…. million hits secret review ... 9 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
NH real estate value, deals, bargains and investment and homes. Greater Concord and Manchester NH homes and real estate. Watch there….. 1house.com ... 9 Apr 2014, Michealjohn
Your post was very nicely written. I’ll be back in the future for sure! model mayhem ... 7 Apr 2014, Calvinbrock735
it’s really nice and meanful. it’s really cool blog. Linking is very useful thing.you have really helped lots of people who visit blog and provide them usefull information.
... 31 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
Mmm.. good to be here in your article or post, whatever, I think I should also work hard for my own website like I see some good and updated working in your site.
what does bubblegum casting do
... 28 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
This is so beautiful and creative. I just love the colors and whoever gets it in the mail will be smiling.
Stardoll Cheats
... 10 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
Yes, great US Military force. Also, in his post you have given a chance to listen about US Military. I really appreciate your work. Thanks for sharing it.
top eleven hack
... 10 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
Thanks for providing recent updates regarding the concern, I look forward to read more
moviestarplanet hack
... 8 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
I should say only that its awesome! The blog is informational and always produce amazing things.
flappy bird hack
... 8 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.
dragon city hack
... 8 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
What a good blog you have here. Please update it more often. This topics is my interest. Thank you. . .
candy crush saga hack
... 8 Mar 2014, Calvinbrock735
Really great post, Thank you for sharing This knowledge.Excellently written article, if only all bloggers offered the same level of content as you, the internet would be a much better place. Please keep it up!
Buy Facebook Likes Cheap
... 28 Feb 2014, Calvinbrock735