Gartner’s CIO and IT Leader Symposium in Gold Coast is (probably) the third largest Symposium behind Orlando and Barcelona. This means I had fewer 1:1s with attendees, but they were no less intensive. And unlike Andrew, I didn’t have to give away any silver bullets.
I had a total of 19 1:1s over the course of 2.5 days. The breakdown looked like:
- IT Services Vendor: 2
- Government (local, national): 10
- End User: 7
There were a range of topics, but information management and big data drew the most interest1:
- Information Management: 9
- Big Data: 9
- Skills/Resources: 7
- BI/Analytics: 6
- Information Infrastructure: 3
- Bimodal: 2
- Master Data Management: 1
- IoT: 1
A number of organizations were seeking help defining an information management strategy and understand what an EIM program looks like when faced with large skill and resource deficits. The main challenge is that these IT leaders were going it alone instead of working with their business colleagues. IM was thrown over the fence as an IT project where it languished.
Refreshingly, the big data conversations were grounded in business value rather than pining for technology. Hadoop and NoSQL never came up, but data federation and virtualization were common topics.
Skills and resources challenges were pervasive for every type of organization. The only stand out was a high-tech manufacturing startup with lots of smart people all doing their own thing in their own data silo. (Data virtualization and integration for analytics was the topic here).
Across several different sectors and problem domains, not one attendee asked for a magic bean or silver bullet to fix the challenges they faced. Everyone recognized getting over their information and analytics challenges would take work. In most cases they simply didn’t know where to start. In other cases they needed help and advice dealing with organizational difficulties. Today, IT is as much about psychology as technology and I referred several people to Tina Nunno’s excellent book, “The Wolf in CIO’s Clothing.”
I’m looking forward to next year’s Gold Coast event to reconnect with those attendees and help with the next phase of their information and analytics journey.
1. The number is higher than 19 as 1:1s tend to cover multiple topics.
Predicts 2019: Data and Analytics Strategy
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