A new year, a new set of IT challenges. Before the holidays, SearchCIO asked IT leaders what IT resolutions they...
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had in mind for the coming year -- and it appears no one is slowing down. Their 2017 IT resolutions are technical and ambitious. Improving customer service -- for IT's internal customers and for the business' customers -- is a top priority.
The compendium of IT resolutions also includes responses from two CIOs -- Dave Jackson of Welch Food Inc. and Cherif Amirat of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) -- who were asked by SearchCIO which emerging technologies were on their radar in 2017.
CIO and executive vice president at Thornburg Mortgage Inc., a mortgage lender in Santa Fe, N.M.
"I want to carve out more time to stay on top of the many developments in technology. I've a particular interest in data analytics and the relationship with security, privacy and ethics. Many disruptions drive innovation and can really boost a company. But not all disruptions are good things. You know the saying, 'Forewarned is forearmed.' I want to be able to make informed and judicious decisions.
"We so often get buried by our workloads ... camaraderie gets neglected. To that end, I've committed to doing a Tough Mudder [endurance event] with some of my system and security engineers."
CIO at Welch Foods Inc. in Concord, Mass.
"Sensor technology is on our radar. We will explore whether there are practical applications for sensors in the vineyards to determine if we can save our farmers money on irrigation, or if the sensors can provide data that might help us determine ways to improve the quality of our grapes. We'll also explore sensor applications on our production lines to help with operational efficiency and line maintenance."
CIO at NuVasive Inc., a medical device manufacturer in San Diego
"It's a little bit of an evolution. We have IT roadmaps that outline our big initiatives for multiple years ahead of us, so we'll tweak those. But, in all aspects, IT used to be very center-focused or inside-focused, and we are moving out to the edge. When we say edge, we mean out of the center of the corporation -- out of the back office, into the sales force; and, actually, we're beginning to position many of our tools even beyond the sales force directly into the hands of our customers.
"We call it moving toward the edge and being on the edge, and we'll continue that. It's a big theme in terms of mobile capabilities, CRM-type [customer relationship management] capabilities, ways to grow our business with our existing surgeon customers and C-level suite hospital administrators. So, we will provide tools to allow the core constituent groups to see the value of our products and services."
CIO at Mars Inc. in McLean, Va.
"It's called data, data and data. We have the great opportunity now with the merger of our chocolate segments. We have an opportunity in the pet care space, where we're creating more and more pet service as a value proposition. All across our business, continuing this important focus on data is key, and organizing our data architecture -- both internally and externally -- is paramount."
CIO at IEEE, a New York-based professional organization
"For 2017, one of my goals is to enhance IEEE's customer experience across all our digital landscape and touch points. We will pursue the development of customer journey analytics capabilities that will enable us to gain insight and intelligence into customer digital experience across multiple platforms and devices."
CIO at Seton Hall University in South Orange, N.J.
"I resolve to spend more time with the front-line IT staff to further improve IT services in 2017. I resolve to spend more time with our CISO to ensure the university's data remains safe in 2017. I resolve to spend more time on IT staff training and development to ensure we have the competencies we need to solve the university's business problems in 2017. I resolve to get business leaders more involved in and responsible for IT budget allocations and the success of IT projects that support the business."
CEO at Inobright Inc., a web and mobile app developer in Lynnfield, Mass.
"Undoubtedly, all the trends of the digital economy will get a lot of play, and information technology will facilitate the continuation of businesses' transformation. We will see the expansion of the internet of things, smart automation, further increase the proportion of mobile and cloud solutions based on big data solutions, and wider use of deep learning technologies. Special focus will be put on robotics. The value of information security will be more and more enhanced.
"If we talk about software engineering, the market increasingly requires business expertise, in addition to pure design. Also, the development cycle will become shorter and shorter. Next year will truly be the year of the customer, with companies offering smart technology solutions to delight business users and consumers alike."
Founder and CTO at Bitium Inc., an app management service provider in Santa Monica, Calif.
- "Achieve full automation of our container-based development lifecycle -- allowing code and configuration to flow from dev to production through a unified process, with minimal human intervention."
- "Continue to break up any remaining monolithic systems into microservices and migrate any remaining VM-based deployments over to containers."
- "Get our 'clean slate' automated environment deployment process to complete in less than 10 minutes."
- "Implement 'chaos monkey' type processes to simulate infrastructure failure to further improve the resiliency of the entire system."
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A CTO's 2017 resolutions