Top 5 Digital Transformation Goals for CIOs in 2020

WalkMe Team
By WalkMe Team
Updated May 8, 2023

2019 is coming to an end, and it’s been an action-packed year for digital change in the corporate world. Digital transformation has caused business organizations to re-evaluate their structure, tools, and of course, strategy. The CIO’s role, in particular, has shifted significantly, and we at WalkMe wanted to narrow down the top objectives that digitally-determined CIOs need to know about in 2020. 

You can find hundreds of articles right now with predictions, imperatives and concepts, all aimed at CIOs. We decided to analyze the predictions from the IDC FutureScape for Worldwide Digital Transformation, and based on those, compile a list of the bottom lines.

Here are WalkMe’s top 5 DX goals for CIOs in 2020.

Design a digitally determined strategic plan

IDC Predictions to reference:

  • By 2020, at least 55% of organizations will be digitally determined, transforming markets and reimagining the future through new business models and digitally-enabled products and services.
  • By 2020, 30% of G2000 companies will have allocated capital budget equal to at least 10% of revenue to fuel their digital strategies.

If we’ve learned anything about digital initiatives over the past few years, it’s that the pace of digital advancement is continuing to speed up, and the rate of change is increasing exponentially. 

CIOs digital transformation

It’s no longer enough to include digital elements within your business strategy. Instead, 2020 will demand the CIO to redesign their strategy to be digitally determined. WalkMe’s VP of  Strategic Development, Amir Farhi, further clarified what digitally determined means: 

“Businesses that are ahead of the game, now have digital strategies for everything, from revenue generation to cost reduction. Integrating digitalization completely into their strategy gives these companies a competitive advantage because it allows them to innovate and adapt more efficiently in their markets.” In short, digital strategy is no longer a “nice-to-have” but rather has become a strategic pillar for longevity.

Dive Deeper: How Organizational Health Keeps Your Company Resilient Amid Change

Being digitally determined also requires strategies to be adaptable and empowered with new and emerging technologies. Gartner poses that organizations under successful CIOs in 2020 “are not afraid to try and fail, or fund projects that might end up being unsuccessful.” 
Digitally-enabled strategy should include a well-calculated and “precise technology spend optimization strategy” according to an Enterprise Talk article. Software and tech plans should be aligned with the bigger company goals, and the adoption plan for these technologies should also be calculated into the greater strategy.

Prepare to integrate CDO tasks into your role

IDC Prediction to reference:

  • By 2022, the CDO title will be in decline, as digital will have become fully embedded, but more than 60% of CEOs will have spent part of their careers leading digital initiatives.

The discussion about changing roles within the organization due to digital transformation is a complex one. In the past couple of years, the CDO title has been on the rise. As more and more companies discovered the need to be constantly updating, implementing, and adopting new technologies, they quickly sought to add a role that would exclusively deal with their “digitalization.”

Farhi explained that “as companies (and their employees across the organization) become more digitally-enabled and the standard for digital dexterity is raised, there won’t necessarily be a need for a dedicated CDO role.” Although this transformation will dilute the tasks and responsibilities of the CDO, the company’s digital expertise role will be absorbed into someone else’s role. IDC’s prediction is that next year, more than 60% of CEOs will have been carrying the torch of digital transformation for their companies.

This is where the CIO of 2020 steps in.

The CEO cannot manage the digital transformation while also spearheading the big-picture objectives. The CIO’s role is evolving into the digital leader. Backed with data, and enabled with a digitally determined strategy, the new CIO is ready to innovate and advocate for all digital initiatives within the organization.

In an interview with WalkMe, CIO of enterprise software company Red Hat, Mike Kelly was quoted saying, “Our job as leaders is to deeply understand what our business model is, how it works, how efficient it is, and then introduce and leverage technologies, and get everybody rallied around adopting them in a way that helps mitigate any issues associated with that.”

Give NPS (Net Promoter Score) reverence 

IDC Prediction to reference:

  • The paramount importance of customer advocacy will result in 60% of B2C brands embracing net promoter score as their leading success metric by the end of 2020.

The funny thing about digitalization is that the more technology is present in our world, the more access we have to inter-human communication. We now have more platforms for sharing experiences, more technology for recording and relaying conversations, and more transparency and insight, than we’ve ever had before. And what that means, is that the pressure is on to make sure your customer experience is excellent.

There’s no such thing as a “miss” that can’t turn into a catastrophe. Every experience counts, and the NPS metric will be the leading success metric for B2C brands by the end of next year.

For B2C CIOs, this prediction has obvious connotations: ramp up on user experience (UX) at all costs. For B2B CIOs, this is an opportunity to offer your customers the tools that will enable them to deliver excellent UX. This year, make sure that your customers understand and integrate the value of your product. Use data and the importance of NPS to your advantage – as a motivator to realize your potential within your market.

CIOs digital transformation

Don’t delay on automation and AI initiatives

IDC Predictions to reference:

  • By 2020, 30% of G2000 companies will have implemented advanced digital twins of their operational processes, which will enable flatter organizations and one-third fewer knowledge workers.
  • By 2023, 35% of workers will start working with bots or other forms of AI, requiring company leaders to redesign operational processes, performance metrics, and recruitment strategies.

Let’s face it – many human tasks that we never thought could be done by machines, are now done by machines. And those tasks are performed better than ever. When a trained, smart, and motivated human sits down at a computer to accomplish a specific task, she is so often slowed down by the menial steps involved, that the main objective becomes an exhausting and overly-complicated task.

Next year, almost half of all G2000 companies will be digitally-enabled enough, that up to one-third of their “employees” will actually be technology. With the constantly emerging tools in the digital market today, it is imperative that you as a CIO, implement automation and AI capabilities into your systems.

Now is not the time to say “It doesn’t take so long doing it manually” if there is an automated option. Don’t cut corners on initiatives that integrate more automation, customization, AI, and machine learning. Research continues to prove that although these tools take significant investment and require a careful adoption strategy, they have the potential to cut costs and catapult your company’s productivity in ways that you simply cannot achieve without them.  

If technology can expedite the “middle-man” tasks involved in navigating software and cross-platform actions, then employees can actually use their time to perform the tasks that they were hired to do. This means less time training and onboarding, less money spent on repetitive-roles, and instead, a greater ROI on each valued employee, enabled by software instead of bogged down by it.

Monetize your data

IDC Predictions to reference:

  • By 2020, 80% of enterprises will create data management and monetization capabilities, thus enhancing enterprise functions, strengthening competitiveness, and creating new sources of revenue.
  • By 2023, 95% of entities will have incorporated new digital KPI sets — focusing on product/service innovation rates, data capitalization, and employee experience — to navigate the digital economy.

If you are a CIO and you aren’t utilizing your data, then you are missing the mark. Big time.

Data management and monetization should be at the top of your agenda, regardless of industry or market. Farhi confirmed that data is one of the most valuable assets for a company, as you have the capabilities to analyze all of your company’s initiatives, engagements, successes, and failures, and then learn from them.

“Data is the fuel for actionable insights.”

– Amir Farhi, VP of  Strategic Development, WalkMe

Farhi continued to explain that digital culture is becoming defacto for all efficient businesses. Companies will, therefore, need to develop and implement digital KPIs to ensure the quality of their digital initiatives. This is a new phase for digitalization in the workplace. The “how to develop” the digital strategy objective will transition into the “how to measure” the digital strategy objective.

CIOs digital transformation

As the CIO in 2020, you have the opportunity to rise to the occasion and offer strategic, digitally-enabled goals for your company. The new year is waiting.

WalkMe Team
By WalkMe Team
WalkMe pioneered the Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) for organizations to utilize the full potential of their digital assets. Using artificial intelligence, machine learning and contextual guidance, WalkMe adds a dynamic user interface layer to raise the digital literacy of all users.