CDOs lack organisational design expertise, says Gartner

When it comes to organisational design research company Gartner has identified a dearth of sophistication among the brand new breed of chief data officers. The company says there are 1,000 CDOs global – from 400 in 2014.
Mario Faria, research vice president at Gartner, said: “Most CDOs are new to the job and frequently have little experience with managing large teams or designing and changing organisational arrangements.
“The CDO organisational layout is all about individuals. It’s not difficult enough to consider what type of CDO an organisation needs to be able to fulfill its business targets, but nevertheless, it can be more difficult to put in place the right individuals to provide on such a construction.

“It’s essential that CDOs think critically about what abilities and behaviors will be needed by the office of the CDO in the short, medium and long term.”
Gartner recently advised the brand new breed of chief data officer (CDO) to construct political alliances of trust to beat the elevated rates of opposition they usually get from IT sections.
In a recent interview with Computer Weekly, Nick Millman, managing director, big data and analytics delivery lead for Europe, Africa and Latin America at Accenture, said his company’s customers were investing lots of time and resources in receiving the organisational layout of their information functions fit for business purpose.
“Organisational changes do often go rather slowly, but we’re seeing a tendency toward a hub-and-spoke model, where you could have a center of excellence together with the critical mass of your information science capacity, subsequently hearts in every one of the essential business areas,” he said.

Gartner has come up with “four organisational design principles that CDOs should use when designing their office”. These are: the CDO organisation as a company service provider; the CDO being “the company”; the CDO as an “engine room”; as well as the dispersal of the exploitation of information assets throughout an organisation, which Gartner calls “everyone is a CDO” organisation.
In the first of these versions, the “CDO organisation as a company service provider”, the office of the CDO “delivers usable information services which are used by both internal and external users”, it says.
Where the CDO organisation “is the company”, the “office delivers internal and external information services which drive business transformation and distinction”.
In the so called “engine room” scenario, the CDO function “provides usable information services which are focused on the requirements the inner users”.
And the “everyone is a CDO” version places the pressure on “information assets [being] used vigorously by business leaders and individual subscribers to break through conventional margins of company”.
Gartner has a committed CDO programme in its Master Data Management summit in London on 2-3 March. To find out more regarding the four versions, customers are referred by it to Successful organizational design principles for the office of the chief data officer.