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Lessons from HP CIO Summit: Are you working with your CMO?


daniel_dorr.JPGBy Daniel Dorr


(Daniel Dorr leads HP's CIO Agenda workshop program. He is responsible for conducting workshops to help CIO clients prioritize key business initiatives, the technology to address those problems and the financial impact of doing so. To participate in HP’s CIO Agenda workshop, contact your account general manager.)


Last week, HP brought together over 100 CIOs from around the Europe, Middle East and Africa at HP Discover Frankfurt. They were there to share ideas and discuss how HP can help them achieve their business objectives; and all agreed, business growth was key.  


The first part of the agenda was focused on current business trends and how CEOs have shifted from trying to conserve resources during the recession to clearly trying to grow now. Because of this growth focus, they are looking for help with:


  • Launching new products and services
  • Attracting and retaining customers
  • Improving their profit mix
  • Cutting enterprise costs to fund growth 


Shifting from a restricted model to a future-focused one

To help CIOs come up with some new ideas for how they can partner with their business peers to accomplish these goals, HP invited a panel of three CMOs from various industries to talk about their priorities and how they’d like to work with IT.


The good news is that all of these marketing leaders see a clear and definite benefit for partnering with IT to launch new products and improve relationships with customers. One area CIO attendees seemed particularly interested in was collaborating with their CMO on digital marketing. Several attendees asked the CMOs about their plans for social media, digital marketing and mobile commerce. 


Ramon Baez, HP’s own CIO shared a few concretes examples for how he’s partnered with the CMO in his former role as CIO at consumer packaged goods company Kimberly Clark. “The first time I met the CMO he had no idea what to do with me.”  Ramon shared.  “His only request was for me to help him digitize his massive employee handbook.”


Two years later, the CMO started to see the need for digital marketing and Ramon was able to partner with him to create a Digital Center of Excellence.  It was a joint program staffed with both marketing and IT to use digital tools to better reach out to customers. 


Improving the CIO/CMO conversation

After Ramon and the CMO panel shared a few ideas with the CIO attendees, event host Peter Ryan, HP’s Managing Director for the EMEA region, challenged the CIO attendees to go back and start a conversation with their CMOs.


“Forrester research shows that only 30 percent of CIOs regularly meet with their CMO counterpart.  Based on what you heard from our CMOs here today, there is a lot of opportunity for you to work together to drive business value.”


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