The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

August - 2010 - issue > CIO Profile

"Technology Will Always be Subservient to Business"

Vimali Swamy
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Vimali Swamy
A computer applications postgraduate from Delhi University and an MBA from Bradley University, he is well aware of both the sides of the coin, the priorities of any organization - business enablement and technology solutions. In today’s world, both cannot survive without the other.

Singh is quick to point out that it is a common sight to see IT departments existing in silos within organizations and having very little or limited business knowledge. It is important that developers focus on the business problems they must solve rather than concentrate solely on technology.

A simple example of what integration of technology with business can achieve is the success of Apple’s iPod. When iPod was introduced several years ago, the market was already flooded with several portable music players. At the user level, there was no integration - users had to deal with disparate pieces to listen to the desired music for downloads, file conversions, and storage. Apple addressed this problem by making iPod user-friendly and launching iTunes, a solution to download selected songs and synch with an iPod. Suddenly, the users from ages 5 to 95 found it easy to use with no training whatsoever. Apple’s other products like iPod Nano, iPhone, and now iPad are an example of what integration of business and technology can achieve.

‘Innovation’ is another factor that Singh believes is critical to the role of a CIO. The evolving role of CIOs’ positions them to use a varied skill set to lead practical innovation within their companies. IT leaders and their teams drive practical innovation to support the corporate strategy. At a growing number of organizations, CIOs are helping to lead that change. “The key to achieving innovation in both the IT and business enterprise is to include CIOs in the development of the corporate strategy. Getting IT executives ‘invited to the table’ and playing a more visible role in setting the strategy is a hallmark of the CIOs’ evolving role,” says Singh.

Singh and His ‘Big 5’

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