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CIO’s and IT Vendors: Forging a New Partnership

In mid-2008, reports began pouring in that CIOs’ budgets had shrunk from double- to single-digit growth, or had even become stagnant. The sharp business downturn in 2009 and a resultant shift of business focus on survival strategy put the spotlight on traditional IT spends.

Since 2011, there is a clear trend and acknowledgement that the new IT spending is shifting from process based optimizations to leveraging IT for revenue growth and creating newer markets

Roles like the CMO are being given more headroom to identify and spend for IT that aligns with business strategy for growth. This shift however is raising many questions on how the new focus should be integrated with the established IT Infrastructure managed by the CIO / CTO.   Many CIOs have acknowledged the new reality and are willing to play a larger role in aligning the current IT infrastructure to business focused IT strategy and spending.

Creative giants like Amazon, Disney and Netflix have shown what businesses can do when they get this re alignment right. They were able to create a transformational strategy that brings user centricity and rich digital experiences into play, which when orchestrated with established IT systems, created end to end fulfillment use cases and established a clear competitive differentiation.

It’s not all about size to be able to create this differentiation. The CIOs have an extraordinary opportunity to impact business success, if they can find and engage with new age IT Service vendors to help them with this transformation.

Business Infogram

In pursuit of New Age IT vendors, CIOs are most likely to be drawn toward providers who exhibit 5 core traits which have a significant impact across value proposition, operational processes and relationship models that define the new mindset.

1.Vendor brings a business perspective to user-centered solutions. Shares creative use cases during pre-sales, to demonstrate the ability to orchestrate with Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud (SMAC) stack.

2.Delivers value from partnerships with platform/IP resellers, analytics firms and digital experience consultants. Demonstrates willingness to act as a conduit for driving thoughts and market needs that fuel relevance based investments in IP.

3.Offers flexible pricing models that straddle Capex and Opex, with a willingness to create no or low-cost POCs to establish the use case.

4.Offers visual insights into effort burn, for budget planning and transparency.

5.Offers managed services that transcend a “keeping the lights on” philosophy, and establish  a robust value chain for delivering end-to-end business IT support for continuity and growth.

New age IT vendor graphic

There is another interesting take on this subject from November 2013 at

In Summary, CIO’s and new age IT Vendors have a great opportunity to establish new

partnership models for creating topline business impact.

Posted by Mahendra Penumathsa on Jan 30