This week I have noticed two new major Chief Data Officer (CDO) appointments, showing that this C-suite trend is continuing to progress steadily. We do not believe it’s a fad. As enterprises slowly recognize the centrality of information to their business strategies and the need to manage it as an asset, the requirement for active, executive level management becomes obvious.
- One of America’s biggest banks, Wells Fargo, appointed Mr. A. Charles Thomas as its CDO – an action significant enough to warrant a short article by Wall Street Journal technology editor Michael Hickens. This CDO reports to the bank’s CIO.
- The City of San Francisco revealed that Ms. Joy Bonaguro has started work as its CDO. Aptly for this digital age, the news came via a tweet from its CIO.
Several trends are confirmed by these appointments:
– Most CDO appointments are in the United States. It does happen in Europe and elsewhere, but its still heavily US dominated.
– The top two industries creating true CDO roles are banking and government.
– Women are highly visible in this role. About a quarter of CDOs so far, are female. That’s double the percentage in the CIO population.
However one trend is being challenged. Up to now, we have noticed nearly all the CDOs in the US are on the East Coast – and mostly within three cities: New York, Washington DC and Boston. These two major appointments are both located in San Francisco. It appears that the #1 tech state is starting to get the CDO idea too.
Is your organisation considering creating a true (C-level of thereabouts) chief data officer role? We have been tracking this for a couple of years. We have a detailed job description template and other useful research reports to help you get the rationale and the scoping right first time.