The CIO in a cognitive computing environment

By: Arthur Cole


Unlike past advancements that largely brought more speed and performance to well-established infrastructure, cognitive computing promises an entirely new data ecosystem. This puts the CIO in a unique position to define and deploy the very technology that could redefine their own role in the enterprise.

According to the most recent Harvey Nash / KPMG CIO Survey, the changes brought about by the desire for digital leadership in the enterprise are already starting to reveal themselves. By an almost two-to-one margin, CIOs at digitally enabled organizations are leading the development of new business strategies, and these companies are four times more likely to invest in cognitive automation than organizations where the CIO is not leading the transition process. In other words, cognitive computing is critical to a CIO’s future success.

Tapping into cognitive’s potential

But exactly where and how should cognitive solutions be deployed going forward? While chatbots and synthetic voices may grab headlines, cognitive’s impact will go much deeper. For example, its ability to manage unstructured data analysis can vastly improve IT support services and daily infrastructure management by enhancing efficiency and delivering successful outcomes to users. It can help knowledge workers search through the IT knowledge base where the solutions to their problems have already been cataloged by others. Cognitive not only provides greater satisfaction for users but also frees up IT’s time for more strategic-level projects that bring greater value to the enterprise.

But cognitive’s potential goes even further than that. It is actually becoming a thinking member of the IT team that can provide advice to decision-makers. For example, the MaaS360 Advisor unified end point management assistant uses machine learning to analyze mobile device connectivity, recommend patches and suggest customized best practices to improve management and protection. By leveraging the Watson platform, it offers insights ranging from basic deployment and configuration to identity management and regulatory issues.

Elevating performance

The goal of all this, of course, is not just to create better IT but also to elevate performance and profitability across the entire business model. Cognitive computing can transform business operations and be particularly useful for organizations as they work to maintain traditional processes while also expanding into new application- and service-based workflows. By improving efficiency, performance and visibility and offering real-time event response and broad-based correlation of disparate data sets to craft highly personal data experiences, cognitive pushes user engagement to entirely new levels.

Cognitive computing will elevate the CIO’s role from what is essentially a technical support position to a core business asset. Traditionally, the CIO’s job was to drive down costs and increase the ability of others to contribute to high-value business processes. With a cognitive infrastructure at hand, the new CIO assumes the lead role in the development of mission-critical services and ensures the resources are in place to keep them functioning at top performance levels.


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About The Author

Arthur Cole

Freelance Writer

With more than 20 years of experience in technology journalism, Arthur has written on the rise of everything from the first digital video editing platforms to virtualization, advanced cloud architectures and the Internet of Things. He is a regular contributor to IT Business Edge and Enterprise Networking Planet and provides blog posts and other web... Read more