Ongoing improvements to information technology (IT) have opened new opportunities for businesses to increase their revenue stream over the past few decades. These new areas of focus are altering business strategies, bringing IT to the forefront, and placing more responsibility on the role of the Chief Information Officer.
The Changing Role of IT
Over the years, IT has changed from an expensive new fad that businesses were forced to experiment with to a powerful business driver. IT continues to evolve, helping to grow revenue and shape business strategy. As a part of that evolution, the role of the Chief Information Officer has also changed.
Today’s CIO has a seat at the decision-making table, helping to develop strategies, draft policies, and increase revenue. This is occurring through a shift from IT as a cost center toward a creator of value. This shift utilizes digital transformation, leveraging big data, the cloud, and other hallmarks of IT to create novel business models that drive revenue and meet long-term goals while ensuring quality operations.
How IT Increases Revenue
IT is driving revenues for companies by providing tools to make the following innovative improvements:
- Increased complex problem-solving: better hardware and smarter applications enable stronger information research and big data analysis, with resultant improvements to scalability planning.
- Better decision-making abilities: Improved IT allows for solid market research through video conferencing, social media, online industry forums, and web-based surveys for consumer feedback. Powerful digital tools for analytics allows for data interpretation and stronger, more informed decision-making.
- Improved marketing: Sales depend on reaching the right customer; predictive technology makes personalized marketing possible, and high-tech analytics provide feedback about the effectiveness of the marketing strategies, enabling real-time pricing shifts to maximize revenue.
- Upgraded customer support: Complex and powerful customer relationship management systems help businesses support their customers through a variety of platforms, including emails, webinars, phone calls, and social media platforms.
- Enhanced resource management: Cloud technology allows employees to access their enterprise-level software from any device in any location, improving productivity and, ultimately, the bottom line.
How IT Affects Corporate Strategy
Business strategies are shifting to maximize the revenue-driving power of IT. The revenue-generating CIO will consider the following strategic issues:
- Capitalize on mobility: Cater to the continued mobile platform growth by increasing the value of mobile apps for customer service.
- Embrace the Internet of Things (IoT): Employ data analytics to harness and utilize big data resulting from the IoT.
- Actively collaborate: A key collaboration between the CIO, with expertise in information infrastructure, and the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), with access to a bank of customer data, should focus on transforming big data into growth and revenue opportunities.
- Experiment with Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI use can reduce cost and increase productivity, and its efficiency is growing exponentially stronger. As a revenue-generator, AI’s power analytics can be harnessed to turn big data into understandable and usable business information.
As technology continues to improve, the role of IT and, by extension, the role of the CIO will continue to evolve and become even more critical to business success. Cost-saving and improved productivity is not enough to provide strategic advantage anymore. A company that can harness and leverage. IT’s revenue-generating possibilities will see improved bottom lines well into the future.