With the number of new technologies emerging, it’s easy for CIOs to be swept away by the technology hype, especially as they continue to hold a prominent leadership profile and command a vital role in defining and spearheading innovation within their enterprise. According to the 2023 State of the CIO findings, commissioned by CIO.com, 86% of CIOs surveyed said their role has become more digital- and innovation-focused despite the emphasis on governance and operational excellence.

But technology investments must be viewed through the business lens: how can they empower the enterprise to boost efficiency while sustainably scaling and driving innovation? We highlight some of the capabilities that are catching the eyes of CIOs and CEOs, helping them to address their technological and business objectives.

_For Cindy Padnos, Founder and Managing Partner of Illuminate Ventures, leveraging data is key to siphoning through the overlays of technologies and tailwinds to determine what is really needed in the market. Hear how she leads her company to utilise data for the best investing decisions. _

Podcast contributors:

  • Cindy Padnos
  • Yadin Porter de León

Addressing the sovereign cloud imperative

The sovereignty of data is an eternal concern that is becoming even more important, in light of regulation, compliance with data protection, legal frameworks, and other constraints.

To comply with this requirement, sovereign cloud is becoming a vital part of cloud computing, especially for organisations with sensitive data workloads such as the national government and the finance and healthcare industries. With the continued explosion in data generation, many organisations are eager to expand their digital capability and unlock potential value from their data. Running confidential and regulated workloads on a secure sovereign cloud ensures compliance with data regulations.

Pushing workloads to the edge
Faster processing at the edge is gaining significant traction in enterprise IT. Edge computing and edge-native apps offer better response times, bringing services faster and closer to people and devices where data is being generated, in turn providing an enhanced customer experience and operational efficiency. Workloads are offloaded closer to the data source which improves system availability for computing and network connections, with a reduction in downtimes.

Enabling new applications with 5G
Modern applications such as telemedicine and smart cities require 5G. With 5G, the full potential of IoT, edge computing, and AI with large-scale societal impact will change the way people work, live, and connect. 5G’s low-latency, speed, and reliability enable innovations across all industries, providing increasingly personalised experiences on smartphones and laptops for consumers, implanted devices and telesurgery in healthcare, driverless cars for transportation, and production robots for manufacturing.

Driving blockchain for streamlined processes
Blockchain with its distributed trust infrastructure can streamline manual or digitally disparate processes in a secure and efficient manner. Industries such as insurance, healthcare, and government with different parties, data sets, and records can gain from the potential of blockchain. For example, warranty claims which involve multiple parties such as the buyer, manufacturer, distributor, and claims department have disparate sets of data, rules, and processes. This can be a cumbersome and time-consuming process and can often lead to conflicts for each party. With a blockchain consortium, the processes can be streamlined to make a chain of records that matches everyone, while restricting access to only what is required for each party.

To weather a rapidly changing economic landscape, there are 3 key considerations that IT leaders can put in place to help them stay focused.

Ensuring consistency

Invest in a consistent infrastructure with consistent operations for resilience, business growth, and to meet the future needs of the business. Disparate architectures between clouds and the fragmentation of operational models and security hinder productivity and revenue growth. While siloed applications can lead to complications in processes for all stakeholders, from supplier to employee and customer.

Future-proofing the ecosystem

Consider your existing IT ecosystem: is it set up to accommodate the integration of new technologies? Ensure that all technologies can interoperate effectively and efficiently, in a way that enhance current business processes and enable new revenue-generating activities.

Centering on business needs

Center on how technology can meet business needs to increase the competitiveness of the business. Work with your team to focus on an investment strategy based on business requirements, especially compliance and innovation, so that technology is the driver for desired business outcomes–long-term return on investments in technology, improvements in operational efficiency, and reduction in cost.