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FCW : October 15, 2012
24 October 15, 2012 FCW.COM the heat s on," said Woods, who has advised Coleman on strategic issues. "The remark be careful what you ask for comes to mind," he said. "I think she s played it well internally by not making a power grab but let it work its way through logically. She and [Baker] have an impact on the organiza- tion they re in, even if you don t agree with all the impact." Coleman "may not have a budget that s equivalent to Roger Baker s or [Department of Homeland Security CIO] Richard Spires , but in terms of value on the dollar, she s got to be mentioned," said Ira Hobbs, former CIO at the Trea- sury Department and vice chairman at large for the American Council for Tech- nology/Industry Advisory Council. The most in uential CIOs tend to be those who have been around longer. "If you lasted and have been successful over a period of time, it tends to bring with it a certain credibility," Hitch said. Even the short tenures highlighted in GAO s report are not necessarily the case among current CIOs. Baker has been at VA for four years, while Spires has been at DHS for three years. Cole- man s tenure as GSA s CIO is now in its fth year, and she previously spent three years as CIO at the agency s Fed- eral Acquisition Service. After a stint as CIO at NASA s God- dard Space Flight Center, Cureton was appointed the agencywide CIO in 2009. In the years since, she s built a reputa- tion as an innovative leader unafraid of embracing new technologies. When news broke about her appoint- ment as NASA s CIO, John Slye, a prin- cipal analyst at market research rm Input, told FCW that Cureton would serve the agency well because she "already has instant credibility in the organization." Being a CIO requires "more than a seat at the table. You have to have a voice that s being heard, being asked," Cureton said. "There s a strategic alignment to the mission that the CIOs struggle with when they re more known as the IT guru, the person to complain to about BlackBerrys and say, Why can t I get an iPhone 5? " she added. She stressed the need for a variant of that question, one that rarely gets asked of the CIO: "How can our mission ben- e t from using the iPhone 5?" "When, and unless, these things real- ly start happening, I don t think we ve implemented Clinger-Cohen the way it was intended," she said. "I don t think there s a law that can dictate that." The question of politics In measuring success, nearly everyone interviewed for this story agreed there was no distinction between career and politically appointed CIOs. Career CIOs have the advantage of being able to start a longer-term program and see it through to completion, VanRoekel said, but politically appointed CIOs might feel the pressure to think about deliv- erables and tighter deadlines, which also has its advantages. There was similar consensus on what CIOs need to thrive: support from the agency s senior managers and their boss ear. "The highest-performing CIOs in government have a seat at the table with the rest of the leadership team," VanRoekel said. "CIOs are the universal translators between the business and the tech- nology needed to meet the mission," he said. "A great CIO can map how to bring information technology to the table to meet the mission better, faster and cheaper than before." Having control over the budget isn t necessarily a must-have to make change happen, but it eases the pro- cess. As Hitch put it, "Unless you have budget authority and clear organiza- tional lines of authority, it takes a lot AVERAGE TIME ALLOCATED (% OF TIME IT MANAGEMENT AND INFORMATION MANAGEMENT AREAS PER WEEK) Information security 14% Areas of responsibility outside the 13 areas 14% Capital planning and investment management 13% IT strategic planning 11% Systems acquisition, development and integration 11% Enterprise architecture 9% IT workforce planning 7% Privacy 6% E-government initiatives 5% Records management 4% Information dissemination 3% Information collection/paperwork reduction 2% Information disclosure 2% Statistical policy and coordination 1% Note: Percentages do not add to 100 due to rounding. Source: Government Accountability Of ce report, September 2011 HOW CIOs SPEND THEIR TIME STATE OF THE CIO
October 30, 2012