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How new IT operating models stave off digital disruption

Clint Boulton | July 13, 2017
These CIOs have disrupted their IT departments to stay ahead of digital changes driving their respective industries. Here is how they did it.

Khan is also prioritising cybersecurity, mulling how to defend against social engineering risks, such as phishing threats, an attack vector he says was hardly an issue as recently as two years ago. Part of his challenge is determining which of the many hundreds of tools available will best help him protect Pure. But he also needs cyber staff that can work with the tools to identify and neutralise threats, a tall task at a time when cyber talent remains scarce. Khan is offering to train up IT staff to more sophisticated cyber roles, including new certifications.

"The people are not there,” Khan says. “The challenges that CIOs have include building out security thinking within your organisation and using that to build out that team. Security is one of those areas where every CIO wants to build up their skill set.”


Kevin Murray, CIO of Cincinnati Bell

kevin murray 
Kevin Murray, CIO of Cincinnati Bell. Credit: Cincinnati Bell

Upgrading IT for a telecommunications carrier, particularly one running legacy ordering, billing and provisioning systems is no easy chore. Yet that’s exactly what Cincinnati Bell CIO Kevin Murray has been focused on in recent years.

As part of a software modernisation strategy to help the company work better with its partners and customers, Cincinnati Bell has been replacing or augmenting custom software with cloud applications from, TOA, Callidus, Microsoft and Xactly, among others.

Last July, the company moved roughly 1,100 employees in its professional services organisation onto FinancialForce, an ERP product hosted on and feeding data to The migration from custom software to FinancialForce took about four months, a much shorter timeframe than the roughly 12 to 24 months it typically takes to move to on-premises ERP solutions. Cincinnati Bell also benefits from periodic upgrades and the software’s ease of use from smartphones.

“It's a lot faster to implement,” Murray says. "We've essentially said SaaS is our preferred path.”


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