ii. Integration within IT
Direct reporting to the CIO is more appropriate in organisations where there is strong IT leadership as this structure makes it easier to coordinate data management with the enterprise architecture and integrate it into the infrastructure. This in turn helps to reduce political conflictas well. The drawback of this reporting structure is that data can quickly be de-emphasised
iii. Report to functional area
There are also other organisational structures in which the CDO reports directly to another C-level executive. This model emphasises a business-driven data agenda that is separate from the architecture and infrastructure mandate of IT, and supports a more collaborative approach to driving business outcomes from data in organisations where there may be a disparity in power between business and IT. This model is used across a wide variety of industries.
What are some the characteristics that a CDO should ideally have?
A successful CDO possesses a balance of technical skills, business knowledge, and people skills, and works effectively with the CIO, to manage data and make it useable.
A technical or business background could assist a CDO to advance business intelligence capabilities and address data quality effectively. A clear understanding of the business domain, as well as desire, passion and imagination to take the organisation to the next level, are equally as important or even more so.
Given that close collaboration with the CTO, CIO and/or CEO, a CDO also needs to have strong communication and process skills so that he/she can effect change and implement new processes.
Above all, a CDO should have a good foresight that promotes the success of the organisation.
As C-suite leaders (CMO, CRO, CRMO) are increasingly delving into analytics/ data-driven projects on their own, will the role of a CDO remain relevant in future?
Since this is an emerging role and there is a need to capitalise and monetise data, CDO will become increasingly relevant in future. While the C-suite leaders will delve deeper into analytics / data-driven projects on their own, the fodder or the data platform needed to do this, will need to come from the CDO as the complexity of data also will grow in the coming years.
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