C-Level Agenda: How CIOs become resilience enablers

C-Level Agenda: You can increase the resilience of your company through consistent digitalization of business processes

Resilience drives the value creation of your company and offers significant future benefits.


More resilient companies are better positioned to anticipate and adapt to future shocks, including pandemics, geopolitical conflicts, the consequences of climate change, cybersecurity threats, industry-specific disruptions, and other unforeseen challenges. In order for a business to develop and maintain resilience, it must reduce negative impacts while retaining the capacity to seize on opportunities that may come its way.


Chief Information Officers (CIOs) can act as resilience enablers by discovering methods to strengthen the organization through enhancing its digital capabilities and investigating how new technology for data analytics can offer a more rapid and precise picture of a business enterprise.

Executives INSIGHTS / Digitalization Thought Leadership Circle


Komax, Tobias Rölz, EVP Market & Digital Services, Member of the Executive Committee

Digital services - both for employees and customers - are the key to success: The combination of a scalable, cloud-based system landscape, AI technologies, and - most importantly - a sound insight into one's own digital supply chain - with an understanding of where data is created in the company, how it interacts, and how these data can then be used to benefit customers and suppliers - are the basis for good resilience.

Sieber & Partners, Dr. Pascal Sieber, Board of Directors, Head of CAS Digital Transformation program, University of Bern

Digital maturity increases resilience in several ways. Digitally mature organizations can design workflows more flexibly (anytime, anywhere), they use software to analyze the situation faster and more precisely (analytics), they have employees who can work perfectly with modern tools (e.g., artificial intelligence), and they open the door to new business opportunities (innovation).

Marcel Nickler, Multi-board member and digitization expert

By combining real-time data with artificial intelligence and machine learning, digitization today enables data-driven decision-making and thus contributes significantly to the resilience of a company. This is particularly evident in a difficult economic environment where speed is becoming an indispensable competitive factor.

Rejhan Fazlic, PwC Director - Head Technology Strategy & Transformation

The last few years have shown us once again how important it is for companies to remain dynamic, flexible and agile. The ability to adapt quickly to new market situations, to optimize business processes or even to change them is essential. Strategic investment in technology or digitization of one's own capabilities is therefore indispensable, strengthens the company in the short to long term and forms a solid basis for further, future market changes.

Swissmedic, Daniel Leuenberger, CIO

The pandemic demonstrated the value of well-coordinated teams of experts to respond adequately and promptly to sudden changes. Digital collaboration in global networks will further extend the reach of our expert teams as well as modern research tools. We are convinced that the use of new technologies along with the necessary competence development will further strengthen our connectivity and resilience in the digital world of healthcare.

Vigier, Claude Gerber, CIO

The basis for digital transformation is a strategy with the appropriate technology. Its implementation requires 100% alignment of C-level and management
If this is exemplified top-down with conviction and motivation, then the change proactively takes place. This creates a future-proof foundation for more resilience within the business model and the entire company.

santésuisse, Dario Mandir, CIO

The health of employees and the security of systems are paramount, with digitization involving top management to create the conditions to enable continuous innovation in a fault-tolerant culture, even in times of geopolitical challenges. Working independently of time, place and device expands the possibilities of an organization, but at the same time also poses the risk of information overload due to the increased number of collaboration tools. Therefore, neuroscientific findings should be taken into account in the future to enable

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The Agenda of CIOs

This year CIOs are assisting in the advancement of a far more strategic and sophisticated agenda than in the past. They are looking for methods to strengthen the organization’s resilience by enhancing its digital capabilities.

The top priorities for an organization's technology investments are according to Forbes digital transformation (53%), IT infrastructure (52%), cybersecurity (49%), and customer experience (48%) projects. However, in order to deal with both the labor shortage and economic instability, investments in hiring and upskilling talents as well as adaptive AI should not be disregarded.

Digital transformation

Based on a PwC report, digital transformation will be the top growth driver in the future, according to 60 percent of executives.

It is no secret that most businesses today acknowledge the importance of digital transformation. However, it is undeniable that many organizations are having difficulties with the digital transformation initiatives they have started. Successful digital transformation supports open communication, transparency, and tolerance for errors.

Organizations have to admit that due to a lack of focus, many new tech projects silently collapse. According to Harvard Business Review (HBR), adopting efforts for digital transformation across the entire business is cited as the top digital transformation difficulty by 46 percent of the respondents. It is important to promote retrospectives at the team and organizational levels for unsuccessful efforts, as well as to support the transformation's vision and strategy as a whole.

Firms need to review how well their digital transformation efforts align with their business goals and key performance indicators (KPIs). Without clear alignment, decision-making will lag and efforts to reshape the digital environment within the company will be less valuable.

CIOs will need to think through how to integrate digital transformation with business objectives and KPIs as they enter the upcoming year. Integration of digital transformation with business objectives and KPIs represent the two most challenging areas encountered as highlighted by 45 percent of respondent firms currently undergoing digital transformations, according to the HBR poll. One KPI that is the most underappreciated indicator of successful digital transformation is assessment of customer satisfaction.

Investments in Technology

Organizations will continue to make investments in technologies that improve company value and streamline procedures in the upcoming year. One of many important drivers for sustained investment in process automation is the labor shortage.

According to HBR, 50 percent of business executive respondees will fund business process automation in 2022. Automation and cloud-based rapid development technologies can help CIOs meet their efficiency and growth goals in 2022 and 2023, allowing them to avoid any economic decline.

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies continue to rank well in technology investments as business priorities evolve. HBR emphasizes that improved corporate data analysis to glean new business and operational insights was ranked fifth in importance with 27 percent in 2021, but by 2022 that number had risen to 33 percent, placing it as the second-most important digital transformation business goal.

Even though having the correct technology in place is essential for the success of digital transformation, businesses should not go after cutting-edge technologies without a defined growth strategy. To choose which set of technologies will be the foundation for the business, CIOs will need to collaborate closely with C-level and other business leaders within the company.

Additionally, as more employees work remotely and in distributed settings, CIOs are being compelled to make larger investments in cloud infrastructure to accommodate this mobile workforce. Firms must carefully monitor their cloud infrastructure to make sure it is safe and offers end users a seamless experience. The ability of staff members and end users to work securely and dependably with data housed across different locations will be a responsibility for CIOs.

Customer Experience

Enhancing customer satisfaction is the top business objective for 34 percent of all companies surveyed by HBR. CIOs will need to take into account the potential for cost savings and new monetization opportunities associated with providing improved customer experiences when evaluating new technologies.

To prevent these digital projects from losing their impact, the CIO must direct the enterprise's resources to ensure that all digital innovations are executed and integrated seamlessly.

Investing in Talents

Organizations recognize that true employee engagement with adoption of new technologies are prerequisites for digital transformation to take place. According to Forbes, CIOs need talent on hand to meet the needs of such transformations. Data analytics and artificial intelligence skills at 41% are the tech skills most in-demand. The second-placed skill set at 36% is cloud-native development and integration. With cloud migration at 28 percent among the less popular skills.

Technology investment also involves investment in people. Using emerging technology that will help shape the business over the next few years requires either hiring or training the appropriately skilled people.

Implementation of Artificial Intelligence

Gartner discovered that even in the most experienced businesses, only 50 percent of AI models ever reach production. The reasons for this are issues with security and privacy as well as a lack of confidence in the data.

However, Forbes identified huge opportunities in employing adaptive AI, which uses real-time feedback and flexible learning algorithms to understand the business and react to shifting conditions. This approach allows businesses to generate and access fresh data for testing in various settings and to continuously adapt the algorithmic output for the user, resulting in specialized and customized services for customers.

Avatars and chatbots could be used as a means to leverage the metaverse to enhance customer service. Using gamification for training and augmented reality for buying ?? should this be ‘selling’ are two other methods. According to a study by Gartner, 51 percent of Gen Z expect augmented reality to exist in some form over the next two years.


In 2023, CIOs will have to strike a balance between enabling innovative tech services to achieve a competitive advantage and reducing costs.

In the past, CIOs tended to concentrate on back-end IT services. However, today 92 percent of CIOs report that they actively define or have an influence over strategic direction (Forbes) of the company, it is therefore evident that those times are long gone. In addition, 57 percent of CIOs claim to actively participate in formulating a corporate strategy.

Today, experts are seeing the CIO's job become even more challenging and subject to increased expectations. It elevates CIOs to a more strategic and important position within the C-suite. Executives are beginning to understand how important the appropriate technology is in defining a company's strategy and how it has the potential to create new business models. In order to carry out these new business objectives and make crucial choices about their tech investments, CIOs are now collaborating with their C-suite counterparts.

The importance of digital transformation to an organization's ability to succeed commercially is only growing. Companies are accelerating their tech transformations and changing their business goals from internal, process-driven objectives to goals that offer greater overall value for the business.

CIOs will need to adopt the appropriate technologies and understand when to deploy them, analyze how their transformation efforts match with business objectives and KPIs, and support reskilling and upskilling of employees in order to address current hiring challenges.

But first, organizations as a whole must face and actively solve the cultural issues hindering the adoption of digital transformation initiatives throughout the entire business.




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