Chief data officer

Chief data officer

A chief data officer (CDO) is a corporate officer who is the manager for enterprise-wide data processing and data mining. The CDO typically reports to the chief technology officer (CTO) or the chief executive officer (CEO).

The role of manager for data processing was not elevated to that of senior management prior to the 1980s. As organizations have recognized the importance of information technology as well as business intelligence, data integration and data processing to the fundamental functioning of everyday business, this role has become more visible and crucial. This role includes defining strategic priorities for the company in the area of data systems and opportunities, identifying new business opportunities pertaining to data, optimizing revenue generation through data, and generally representing data as a strategic business asset at the executive table.

With the rise in service-oriented architectures (SOA), large scale system integration, and heterogeneous data storage/exchange mechanisms (databases, XML, EDI, etc.), it is necessary to have a very high level individual guide the creation and implementation of data strategy. Besides the revenue opportunities, acquisition strategy, and customer data policies, the Chief Data Officer is charged with explaining to executives, employees, and customers the strategic value of data and its important role as a business asset and revenue driver. This is in great contrast to the older view of data systems as backend IT systems.

Cathryne Clay Doss of Capital One was appointed their Chief Data Officer in 2003. Dr. Usama Fayyad, Chief Data Officer and Sr. Vice President of Yahoo! was also one of the first individuals known to officially hold this job title. Another person who held this title is Thomas Mueller, Chief Data Officer of Allied Management Group (AMG-SIU). John Bottega became the Chief Data Officer of CitiGroup's Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB) unit, which makes him the first person in the financial field to hold that title. He is currently the CDO of the NY Federal Reserve and Chairman of the EDM Council.

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