CIO roundtable: What did attendees have to say?


CIO roundtable: What did attendees have to say?

Laura Whitaker, Practice Manager, IT Forum

In early December, the IT Forum hosted its first-ever CIO roundtable. We have been touting these sessions—reserved for 20-30 CIOs to discuss our best practice research on performance analytics, business intelligence, and security awareness—as the “crown jewels” of an IT Forum membership.

After the lively interactions wrapped up, and the last member was out the door with winter coat and umbrella in hand, we reviewed the evaluations we asked the CIOs to fill out. It was incredibly gratifying to discover that our inaugural roundtable had received a perfect score.

100% excellent

We asked each attendee to fill out an evaluation reviewing the roundtable. Unanimously, they gave our inaugural roundtable a grade of “excellent.”

At the conclusion of the meeting, the chief research officer for EAB, who had been in the back row for the session, decided to share some of his observations of the roundtable with leaders across the firm:

“For those who didn’t have the pleasure of sitting through the last two days, let me report on just two of the many things about this new membership worth noting. First, we are serving an incredibly smart, thoughtful, and strategic constituency. I think we were all impressed by how much the CIOs knew about and were involved in the biggest issues facing their campuses—student success, enrollment management, academic efficiency, and decision support. Forget servers, software, and infrastructure—they are all about strategy, business problems, and solutions.

Second, they are leading the charge on their campuses on the use of business intelligence and just about every issue around data analytics.”

His comments reflect the confidence that we have about the growing leadership role IT is to play in executing initiatives driven by business intelligence, data, and analytics. We have seen provosts, presidents, and CBOs champion these efforts—but, increasingly, a partnership with CIOs is critical to bringing these projects to fruition.

Our profiled tactics are currently in use at higher education institutions, which enables us to provide practical insights that drive immediate impact. Our attendees echoed this sentiment on their evaluations—stating that they would be putting the information they learned at the roundtable to use when they arrived back to campus. I was very proud of the team’s work. This is high praise indeed from busy, information-saturated CIOs.

Do you agree with the following statement?

We asked attendees to respond to this statement on their evaluations: “I plan to take this information back to my organization and implement an idea or educate my colleagues.” Strongly agree: 89%; Agree: 11%.

Attendees also provided feedback regarding the changing nature of their roles on campus. Several of the members agreed that their roles are evolving to focus more specifically on the “information” aspect of being a CIO. With the advice and practices from our research, plus the new networking contacts built at the meeting, these CIOs feel more excited—and better prepared—for that evolution.

We are hosting more CIO roundtables in 2015, where we’ll continue our in-depth research on the data-driven enterprise. Make sure to save your seat now before we reach capacity.

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