Sunday, March 04, 2007


Question for CIOs in the blogosphere...

Lots of CIOs read CIO magazine for insight into industry trends but of course there are trends occuring that don't get coverage. I wonder what their thoughts are of them...

Chris Anderson asked who needs a CIO without necessarily defining the term crisply. The question implied that an organization needs one, not multiple. I would be curious to know how many Fortune 200 enterprises have one and only one CIO?

CIOs in many shops are savage believers in the discipline of enterprise architecture, a topic that is covered by CIO magazine frequently. Have CIOs ever asked themselves whether CIO magazine is doing themselves a disservice by only providing insights from peers and not the perspectives of those below them? Could you become smarter by learning from enterprise architects in other shops as to what really works and what doesn't?

The potential cost savings for adopting lightweight approaches to software development are too significant to ignore yet CIOs ignore it all the time. How come CIOs simply haven't shown much interest in agile methods and continue to allow it to be driven from the bottom-up even when there are significant metrics that support that it should be a top-down strategy?

CIOs as a demographic seem the least aware of the potentials that open source models can bring. Sure, I understand that the current definition of open source is relatively boring as discussed by industry analysts as it focuses on operating systems, application servers and other commodity oriented things that really don't enable the strategic intent you pursue. I am of the belief though that there are many opportunities to save money on industry vertical software that isn't competitive advantage yet you spend a lot of money supporting it. If it is expensive yet doesn't provide competitive advantage for you, the same may hold true for your competitors. Instead of outsourcing, why not consider open sourcing. Outsourcing makes it cheaper in terms of labor arbitrage but otherwise you are still stuck with proprietary painful support costs that can be spread over additional organizations...

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