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The CIO divide ahead In the digital era, these kinds of transformations will be essential to One key issue is the pace and sequencing of the move from today’s business longevity. But they will also create profound challenges for systems to tomorrow’s digital technologies. “It’s easy to see and the firms making them and seeking to make them. And, given the understand the opportunities for these changes, and for cutting strategic nature of the changes that a digital transformation capital spending and moving toward a more flexible business requires, they also hold major implications for CIOs. “What is model,” says Dave Ryerkerk, Global IT Advisory Leader at EY. “But keeping leading CIOs up at night? It’s the challenge of how their what’s really hard for CIOs to answer is this question of pace.” business is going to be fundamentally transformed by digital,” says Rob Preston, Editor in Chief of InformationWeek. “It’s about the role of technology leaders in a world that puts a premium on innovation and growth, and considers everything else a cost center.” udy Zalando and Zooplus: t CIOs in online retail e s Philipp Erler, CIO, Zalando Richard Alan Herz, CIO, Zooplus as Unlike most retailers, German-based marketing and logistics. This raises business. “I don’t have a bunch of C pet supply company Zooplus was born conflicts with sales and marketing who people from business areas running in digital. Launched during the dot-com continue to view IT simply as a service the door who think that they have to era, it now operates across Europe, and provider. To reset this, Herz has been tell me something to get their has annual sales of more than €400m. given a direct mandate from the board requirements prioritized. I have a lot of Digital’s rapidly evolving potential — not to be an active participant in core peace of mind because teams organize least the new retail sales channels it strategic decisions. He is now charged things themselves,” says CIO Philipp opens up and the radical new logistics with providing a clear vision of where Erler. ideas it can deliver — has made CIO digital will take the business. This structure frees the CIO up for Richard Alan Herz a vital voice in At Zalando, a pan-European online other responsibilities, from strategic shaping the firm’s future business fashion retailer generating well over engagement with the rest of the model. “We need agility, given the €1b in annual sales, despite having business, through to even acting as a technology changes emerging, such as only been set up in 2008, the CIO marketer for technology recruitment. “I new interaction technologies like shares the experience of being at the must manage to establish our firm as a Google Glass,” he says. heart of setting the firm’s digital software company and, if we can do But Herz says the firm was originally strategy. However, as IT is that, then we will be a much more set up like a standard IT organization decentralized, he has a quite different exciting proposition for talented because of its strong focus on sales, relationship with the rest of the developers,” says Erler. 8 | Born to be digital

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