Is a chief data officer more data or analytics?

Emerging roles and markets leader, Big Data & Analytics Category Team, IBM

I asked this question of Mark Ramsey, chief data officer at Samsung Mobile. I know what comes to mind when I think of data is data strategy, data quality, data integration, governance and data infrastructure. Being from the technology industry, and IBM in specific, data and analytics are two different disciplines that are highly reliant upon each other. But at many companies these two functions are married together to the point of no distinction. To the senior leadership of many companies, it is a given that data only has value when analytics are applied and actions can be taken to achieve outcomes. In the end, this is all viewed as data-related, hence chief data officer.

Really, how many people get to pick their title or want to tell the CEO or president that this is not the most accurate title and his or her role should be called chief data & analytics officer given that their responsibilities include both data and analytics. In fact most chief data officers I have spoken with saw no point to just data duties alone, admittedly these are often a big part of what they do, but CDOs acknowledge that the innovation and subsequent growth the company is looking for, is in the analytics that drive outcomes.

This short video features commentary from Mark Ramsey, Samsung Mobile’s chief data officer, on his view of the role.

To learn more about the CDO role, check out this infographic and please visit the IBM Big Data & Analytics Hub or the IBM Big Data & Analytics page on LinkedIn.