Our key takeaways from the CIONET Business Strategy Boot Camp

When we heard about a boot camp covering topics such as digital business models and boosting innovation, it sounded right up INNOCOM’s alley. So Davey Rogiest, director and enterprise architect at INNOCOM, went to moderate a table on these subjects. We learned a lot and at the end of the day we wrapped up our key takeaways, which you can read below.



  1. CIOs still feel a lot of friction as their businesses have to lower margins and so reduce (IT) costs

CIOs need a big enough budget to innovate. So when finances are tight this means more careful selection of where to innovate first – something CIOs struggle with. In the meantime, there is an increasing need to service the full end-to-end customer journey and offer the right tools to achieve this. And of course, the threat of new business models and smaller disruptive players still needs to be monitored.


  1. The budget problem

Everyone wants new digital services to bring added value to the existing business. At the same time, organizations are still struggling to simply optimize and automate existing services and related business processes. As everyone is searching for the same expertise and specific competences, CIOs are looking at co-innovation and forming consortia.


  1. CIOs struggle to push technology as a driver for innovation

A lot of C-levels still see technology as a threat to the current business model and their comfort zone. But others are thinkers who see the need, the MUST, for change.


  1. CIOs need to help the company find the right balance

A balance between an enlightened customer experience that will bring added value to the current services/products and focusing on offering and pushing expertise which has a high cost.


  1. CIOs realize that they could use data as an asset, but Belgium lags far behind

Everyone is still struggling to capture more data and the right kind of data, gaining control of that data and even gaining control of the master data.


So to conclude, today’s CIOs have many different roles and can act as:

  • a catalyst, leader, bringing together stakeholders in the company
  • a leader who thinks beyond the comfort zone of the current culture and offering
  • a bridge builder between old and new cultures (getting people on board is still a big problem)
  • the “manager of technology impact”
  • the leader of the “coalition of the willing” for making a company a digitally driven team
  • the shaper of ecosystems and partnerships

Do we need a CDO?

  • A Chief Data Officer? Yes!
  • A Chief Digital Officer? No, that’s just a new buzzword for the new CIO.