Last edited 06 Apr 2022

Chief digital officer CDO

[edit] Introduction

Chief Digital Officer (CDO) or Chief Digital Information Officer (CDIO), is a role that was defined for many larger companies in and around 2010 with the expansion of digitisation through smart phones, web applications and so on. It might be defined as a position that focusses on the relationship between people, processes and technology.

A CDO often works in tandem with a Chief Information Officer (CIO) who is responsible for an organisations internal information technology infrastructure and services. As digitisation expanded to many aspects of public and private life so to did the way buildings were operated and managed. Traditionally a caretaker may have kept a building in order for its users, and this role then become expanded by the more clearly defined role of Facilities Manager (FM), which included the management of technical systems found within buildings. A Chief Digital Officer (CDO) for larger organisations may liaise with both an FM and CIO, having a good grasp of technical and digital issues, however the role is considered broader, being the interface between digitisation, staff and clients, and as such it may also touch on User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) design, innovation, entrepreneurship, and direct business engagement.

[edit] Cities

As digitisation impacted almost every aspect of modern life, some 5 years later, many major cities started to appoint their own chief digital officer to help with digital transition. The tasks ranged from developing city services online, and collecting, managing and using data to monitor key performance indicators, to developing city apps that help citizens live more easily in their city and real-time management and monitoring of city infrastructure and services through a command and control centre or city dashboard.

For example, Theo Blackwell was appointed as London’s first Chief Digital Officer (CDO) in September 2017, to lead on London-wide digital transformation, data and smart city initiatives at City Hall.

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