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Industry Opinion: How Should CPOs and CIOs Evaluate Enterprise Solutions? 

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A recent article on CPO Rising by Andrew Bartolini & Matthew York of Ardent Partners talks about reviewing enterprise technology and we take that to include reviewing possible IT purchasing solutions.

They claimed that it matters less which capabilities or features the solution offers, and more what can be done and enabled to generate value for the enterprise. CIOs, CPOs, and the other business leaders involved in the technology evaluation process need to define the desired business outcomes and then work aggressively to identify the solution(s) most likely to generate them. 

We couldn’t agree more. Helping clients succeed to save time and money and create other benefits of value is the sole focus of Markit. 

Furthermore, they suggest an evaluation framework, to aid CIOs and CPOs in their solution-selection process, that incorporates the most common outcomes and the factors most likely to enable them.  

  • Adoption: The value created by solutions is directly tied to how frequently and how well they are used. Solutions that highlight usability and speed of deployment drive greater activity and impact.  

  • Growth (Customers, Sales, Community, etc.): Solutions that can attract and engage their target audience with a better experience and/or improve the delivery of business’ products and services can yield faster growth.  

  • Process Efficiencies: Solutions that can link, streamline, and automate processes to make them highly repeatable and scalable drive great value for business process owners. In particular, solution suites can create a process ecosystem where one outcome “feeds” the next, accelerating efficiencies across the value chain.  

  • Business Effectiveness: As enterprises compete on all fronts, how each business function or team executes can have a cascading effect on the larger enterprise. Business leaders use technology to scale and streamline operations, but they also want to use technology to improve them.  

  • Visibility/Intelligence: In today’s data-driven world, the ability to mine data and convert it into intelligence and value is table stakes. Systems that capture, aggregate, cleanse, categorize, enrich, analyze, and present data that can provide users with visibility and actionable intelligence are foundational to Best-in-Cass performance.  

  • Compliance: Whether it is adherence to contract SLAs and T&Cs, internal processes, or regulatory requirements, compliance can be a significant value driver and/or cost and risk mitigation tool. Flexible solution design and smart reporting can aid compliance efforts significantly.  

  • Savings: However they are defined, savings can be a powerful dividend to a successful technology deployment. Solutions that model and improve upon offline, legacy processes can play an important role in saving money.  

This seems to us a very sensible and effective way for CIOs and CPOs to collaborate to identify the maximum value of any potential IT procurement, or other enterprise, solution under evaluation. What’s more when we read each item we feel validated too, all these areas play to Markit’s strengths and we can modestly but honestly say that many of larger clients (we are the IT purchasing choice for 20%+ of the Forbes Global 2000) do evaluate us in these ways and more. 

Ardent’s findings and conclusions are based on survey of 300 CPOs and CIOs.  

Read more at The CPO and CIO’s New Approach to Evaluating Enterprise Technology