The Power Of Talent

The very latest news updates

From across our global network

5 best tweets / quotes / things we learnt - Manchester CIO Event 2017

Held on the top floor of KPMG's new offices in central Manchester, almost 100 technology leaders gathered to hear the results of the 2017 Harvey Nash / KPMG CIO Survey.

Our photographer was there to capture it all. Take a look in our photo album.

The panel were:

  • Phil Smith, CIO, Vaultex
  • Malcolm Whitehouse, CIO, University of Manchester
  • Lorraine Campbell, IT Director, Cox Automotive

Panel host: Natalie Whittlesey, director, Harvey Nash


2017-09-28 lee clayton.jpgLee Clayton - @STIGtheGEEK
80% of all stability issues are caused by humans. Bring on the automation. #hnkpmgciosurvey

2017-09-28 guy weaver.jpgGuy Weaver - @GuyWeaver
#hnkpmgciosurvey insightful findings. 6 in 10 report skills shortage, big data most scarce. @kpmguk MCR
2017-09-28 guy weaver pic.jpg

2017-09-28 catherine.jpgCatherine Sanders - @cathie_sanders
Interesting debate about the impact of GDPR on investment and innovation. #hnkpmgciosurvey

2017-09-28 lee clayton.jpgLee Clayton - @STIGtheGEEK
If it isn't stable and secure - you are not going to get exec airtime #hnkpmgciosurvey

2017-09-28 phil.jpgPhil Jones MBE - @PhilJones40
"CIO's are less about technology & more about becoming agents of change in the enterprise" - Dr. J Mitchell #hnkpmgciosurvey


On Brexit:
Phil: We have over three hundred EU nationals working for us and we are already seeing issue with retention. But we just have to adapt...
Lorraine: Being an organisation with a UK customer base you might expect us to not be affected. But when you look at the plans of the wider supply chain (customers include BMW for instance) there is a wider context to take into account.

Malcolm: We hired an expert, who scared the hell out of everyone! Our particular challenge is that we deal with such a wide user base, from academics using chalk and blackboards, to our work with the NHS where we are dealing with millions of patient records.
Lorraine: There is a veil of fear that has come to organisations. There is a tonne of real stuff we need to do...and we've just got to get on the journey.
Phil: We have quite a structured process in place to address GDPR...that said, we need to consider the effect of our customers flowing their own GDPR requirements to us, most likely one day before it becomes law!

On disruption, automation and robots:

Lorraine: At Jaguar Land Rover (Lorraine's previous employer) about 80% of car construction was carried out by robots; people have got used to the technology.
Malcolm: The most disruptive, and valuable, technology development for me is in finding ways to help our students achieve better results. Using analytics we can identify what characteristics result in success (like library attendance for instance) and then help nudge people into successful behaviour.
Lorraine: My competitor is now eBay...or a software developer finding new ways to buy and sell cars. We need to be asking how we will be selling our services in ten years' time to a very different generation of customers. And I need to convince the board of this all...
Phil: Combining Big Data with AI, like IBM's Watson, has the potential to make the biggest step change. Like most people, what I haven't got my head around is the exact detail of how this will change things, and what value it will bring.

On people, technology and projects:
Malcolm: Many organisations have a large legacy system base, and a spaghetti-like architecture holding it all together. A key question is how do you balance spending time maintaining and repairing the 'old', as opposed to investing in the 'new'.
Lorraine: We need to stabilise our infrastructure before we innovate.
Phil: 80% of the instability is caused by people and processes, not technology. I wonder if in our drive to become more efficient and more agile we are losing site of our knitting - the core value we deliver.
Lorraine: When you start a project you rarely explain what life is like after the project and the positive value it might bring to people.


1. Uncertainty creates opportunity.

Whether it was the surprising result from the U.S. elections, or Brexit, or the increasing levels of more localised political and economic change in Latin America and Asia Pacific, it seems CIOs have become more used to unpredictable circumstances in the last year.

64% said they have changed their tech plans due to uncertainty.

The focus is building stable IT, but also a more nimble organisation to adapt to an unpredictable future.

2. CIO influence grows.

In unpredictable times the strategic influence of the CIO continues to grow.

For the first time in a decade, more than seven in ten respondents (71 percent) believe the CIO role in their organization is becoming more strategic.

A couple of years back we reported on the rise of the CDO and the growth in shadow IT, speculating whether the influence of the CIO is ebbing.

What this year's survey shows this is very much not the case, perhaps buoyed by the board's priority for the CIO to get back to basics. Something that CIOs are very good at.

3. But who drives innovation?

Despite the growing influence of the CIO, there is still much more work to do.
When it comes to innovation there is a clear gap between the role CIOs want to perform, and the role they are actually performing.

Sixty percent believe the top IT leader should be leading innovation across the entire business, when in fact only 26% actually are.

The reality right now is that many IT leaders are having a pivotal role in the technical element of innovation, but not the business element.

4. Cyber threat grows.

Although this CIO Survey was taken before the WannaCry attacks, it does reflect an ongoing trend of increasing threat.

Almost a third of respondents (32 per cent) reported that their organisation had been subject to a major IT security incident or cyber attack during the past 24 months, up from 22% 2014. Insiders are the biggest growing threat.

5. What sets the 18% 'most digital' organisations apart? A Digital Leader...

Builds a stable and secure infrastructure. For the CIO to lead on other things they must lead on technology. And that requires a razor sharp understanding of technically how things fit together.

Makes aggressive investments in agile and disruptive technologies. Digital are investing far more aggressively in cloud and forcing the pace of adoption across all elements. This is really important as cloud is the core foundation to enable all other elements of digital. Cloud forces a different operating model - driving away from direct control, with budget being driven in many different places.

Aligns business and IT strategy, from front to back office, Digital leaders are tilting the model from functional siloes to end to end processes and journeys.

Is focused on innovation and growth. Its about driving the discussions around what 'might be' not 'what is'. This is only possible when you have done the other three things. You need to have a stable platform, automation driven to the highest level and the architectural capability to understand how to dissect business opportunities to a technology solution.

Thank you to everyone who took part, and who continue to make the CIO Survey events a great way to share knowledge and insights.

If you would like to find out more about Harvey Nash please visit, or contact

If you would like to find out more about KPMG please visit or contact