CIO Event Leeds- 5 Best Quotes / 5 Things We Learnt

May 16, 2016

Held at KPMG, 1 Sovereign Square, Sovereign St, Leeds LS1 4DA, Almost 100 CIOs and technology leaders gathered to hear the results of the 2016 Harvey Nash / KPMG CIO Survey.

Our photographer was there to capture it all. Take a look in our photo album.

Our guests on stage were:

Survey Finding Speakers
Jonathan Mitchell, Harvey Nash
Derek Kay, Director, CIO Advisory, KPMG

The panel were:

Chris Robinson
Global CIO – International Personal Finance

Elouise Di Luce
Business Expert – Conscious Workplace Foundation

Richard Carter
CEO – The Nostrum Group

Simon Warrington
European CIO – Equifax

Quotes – Five of the best

Is it really about big data? In the past Equifax has positioned itself as a data company, but actually it is more about insights. Data is only valuable when you have people who can derive the value from it.

A member of the audience asked whether increased use of cloud also increases security risks. Chris didn’t feel this was an issue for him: ‘Amazon has many more people looking at security than I have in my team.’

One thing that is often overlooked in IT is the human angle. Elouise talked about how important it is for CIOs and business leaders to be aware of what their teams think and feel, and also aware of how their words and actions can have far reaching effects.

An audience member asked for views around the EU referendum, especially as recent polls suggest the result may be less predictable than originally thought. The discussion centred on how well prepared companies are, especially if the outcome is Brexit. Elouise asked if CIOs and companies have a communication plan in place. Other panel members said a Brexit could have implications on systems. ‘EU / Brexit is a proof point around agility and how orgs can deal with this kind of change.’

The discussion moved on to talent and migration. One panellist highlighted just how much of his team are from outside the UK. The UK tech industry is reliant on foreign talent.

Five things we learnt

1/ The CIO role is changing (fundamentally):

  • The old operational priorities of cost saving and infrastructure are declining, and new outward facing ones are increasing – such as revenue growth and digital
  • Connected to this more CIOs report directly to the CEO (34 percent) than at any time in the past decade, rising 10 percent over the last year
  • This increase in importance has come about as the CIO is becoming more focused on non-IT activity. Four in ten CIOs now spend more than one day a week in areas entirely unrelated to traditional IT.

2/ Skills shortage grows, but good news on gender diversity

  • Despite CIOs being more creative and increasing their influence, they still are being hindered by the greatest technology skills shortage since the Great Recession almost a decade ago.
  • Almost two-thirds (65 percent) of CIOs say they believe a lack of talent will prevent their organization from keeping up with the pace of change, a 10 percent increase in just 12 months
  • Eleven percent of survey respondents were female, up from 8 percent last year and the first time in the survey’s history women made up more than one in ten participants. Women in the top CIO role has risen by a third – up from 6 to 9 percent.

3/ Cyber security – One in three global CIOs responded to cyber-attacks in the last two years

  • Almost one in three (28 percent) of CIOs have had to respond to a major IT security or cyber-attack on behalf of their organization in the last two years
  • Almost half of CIOs (49 percent) report data loss and privacy risks as the biggest challenge with adopting cloud technology
  • Only a fifth (22 percent) of CIOs feel confident their organization is very well prepared to identify and respond to cyber-attacks compared to nearly a third in 2014

4/ CIOs are getting to grips with digital

  • Almost one in ten companies implemented an enterprise wide digital strategy (jumping from 27% to 35%)
  • Alongside this growth in strategy comes a growth in importance: the single most likely body to own the digital strategy is the Board. IT comes second. It’s worth noting here that Marketing, perhaps the traditional sparring partner of the CIO in digital, is now close to the bottom. Companies are developing a clearer understanding of what digital means for their business and as such the old confusions between digital business and digital marketing are resolved.

5/ CIOs increasing agility

  • Big jumps are planned in cloud investment
  • 59 per cent of organisations looking to implement agile methods to develop and deliver IT services
  • For the Creative CIO, the goal is to simplify organisational structures to successfully to deliver both a more agile and innovative business environment and a more engaging customer experience.

Thank you to everyone who took part, and who continue to make the CIO Survey events a great way to share knowledge and insights. If you would like to find out more about Harvey Nash please visit, or contact If you would like to find out more about KPMG please visit or contact