Chapter 15

The CIO Sales Agenda

How to Build an Advanced Sales and Distribution IT Infrastructure

Robert Wollan, Paul Daugherty, and Saj Usman

Special acknowledgment to the Accenture High Performance IT Research team for their contributions to this chapter.


Chapter Summary

  • The CSO and CIO agendas are converging, but dealing with environmental and business changes are pushing them farther apart.
  • Ambitious plans to respond to market complexity at the right speed is exposing operational complexity from years of layering on sales tools.
  • CIOs today are taking on exponentially more complex issues as they deal with aging legacy applications and hardware that are slow, but not “obsolete enough” to make replacement justifiable from a cost standpoint.
  • CIOs have an opportunity to play a significant role in the move to Agile Selling by adopting a more agile IT operating model and contributing their expertise to sales network enablement.

As we discussed in Chapter 1, advancements in technology have failed to deliver any measurable improvement in sales organization performance since the advent of sales force automation tools two decades ago. We underscored the fact that “dueling complexities” of the chief sales officer and chief information officer have played a major role in that failure, typically preventing the sales and IT organizations from more effectively aligning their agendas in the pursuit of growth. Such misalignment simply must be overcome for any company to successfully make ...

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