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The Pandemic has changed the way business & technology leaders are being measured. Are they able to serve customers and run their businesses digitally? 

By carlos Castan

Given the current Coronavirus business and health environment, companies need to shift courses and focus on delivering their products and services in a more "Digital" manner than ever before. Both business & technology leaders need to update/optimize their new reality focus, because their business performance will now be measured this way!

Please see attached url article from the Wall Street journal/Sara Castellanos for more information on this topic.

 Chief information officers are more important to their chief executives than ever before, as they navigate remote work needs and economic challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic, said Aaron Levie, chief executive of software maker Box Inc.

“All their IT decisions have been appreciated and underscored more than any other point in history,” in part because companies are now seeing how investments in technology and workforce productivity are paying off, Mr. Levie said at a WSJ CIO Network virtual conference Tuesday.

As companies face economic challenges, IT leaders should focus on technology projects that could add value and help the business deliver a profit on a quarterly basis, he said. For example, IT leaders should focus on initiatives related to employee productivity or technologies that could help improve the supply chain, Mr. Levie said. Technology initiatives that have a two- to five-year timeline for productivity gains are no longer an option. “Those days are over no matter what. Nobody has that time scale available,” Mr. Levie said.

CIOs are being measured by CEOs based on whether their company’s workforce is fully productive while working remotely, and whether the company is able to serve its customers entirely digitally, Mr. Levie said. Data security also needs to be embedded in those strategies, he said.

CIOs who are most well-equipped to lead during this uncertain time must have a strong business-first approach to technology, said Mr. Levie, who is also the co-founder of the online storage file-sharing service. They need to work in collaboration with their CEOs, perhaps communicating on a daily or weekly basis, to determine how technology can be applied to their workforce and customer experiences, he said. Mr. Levie said he communicates with one of Box’s IT executives weekly. He speaks with Box CIO Paul Chapman primarily about how technology is affecting the employee experience.

Cybersecurity has been top of mind during the pandemic, Mr. Chapman said in May. “You have a lot of stressors that are going on in people’s personal lives that increase their risks of susceptibility, and bad actors are trying to exploit that,” he said.

Box, which has about 2,000 employees, in May unveiled a feature that allows companies to specify ownership and security requirements on both personal and company-owned devices for users to access the Box software. The company also launched in April a tool that automatically detects malware, notifies IT and security teams and restricts the sharing of malicious files.

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Carlos Castan | DataWorks LLC

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