Understanding the role of the Chief Digital Officer

Chief Digital Officer (CDO) is a title that is getting a lot of air time. We'd hardly heard of it 5 years ago, and now it's cropping up constantly as businesses look to make the most of their digital transformation. 

For too many businesses, digital transformation hasn't quite reached its first end point, and rarely its desired results. It's not surprising then that the answer might be to bring in the digital mastermind in the form of this newest of job titles. There's a simple challenge here - if you're creating the role, it's only going to be the answer if you're very clear on what it entails, and how it's going to take you from 'in progress' to 'success'. 

Why do you need a CDO?

It is important to have someone in leadership who truly understands digital, who knows the IT landscape, who knows what consumers are looking for, and can drive revenue from your channels and improve ROI. 

Let's start with the basic premise. The role of the CDO encompasses what a lot of great CIOs and CMOs already do. They are customer and data driven, they keep up-to-date with emerging technologies, and they have experience rolling out and delivering on projects on a large scale. But what exactly should you expect from a CDO?

Here are 5 things to expect:

  1. Develop the end-to-end strategy, and design and implement your company’s digital road map
  2. Create a bridge between other teams, which often involves enlisting involvement from other executives, to establish priorities and support the business units through transformation programmes
  3. Generate revenue through the company’s corporate channels
  4. Lead the business through the impact of digital change, taking on board cultural sensitivities for the non-digital natives
  5. Track new efficiencies and ROI and replace manual processes with technology that will save on costs and generate revenue

Could Talmix help?

Some examples of digital transformation projects where companies have come to Talmix include:

  • defining a global holding company’s omnichannel strategy
  • review all current digital assets and scale across the business for a financial services firm
  • find a digital consulting expert to help a leading private equity firm navigate their digital transformation

Using Independent Talent

One of the first ways to use a consultant is to help define the role: an independent can look at your organisation, decide if you really need to hire a CDO, and define the role and responsibilities.

CDO roles may not be needed on a permanent basis. Once the transformation is complete, the role transitions. By working with an independent consultant, you can bring in the expertise and skills needed to complete the project without the cost and time to hire and on-board a permanent employee. Independent consultants can drive your digital agenda forward, and communicate the positive aspects of change.

Why use Talmix

Talmix is the home of independent business talent. Consultants in the Talmix network are selected to take on assignments based on having a career history taking them to C-level roles, or in strategic consulting engagements where they have delivered business growth.

 

Learn more about using consultants for interim roles - Chief Digital Officer (CDO) specification.

About the Author

Dorothy Mead

Dorothy is a technology marketing veteran who is responsible for building the Talmix brand globally and creating digital programmes to engage and retain our audiences.

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