When ITA LIVE takes place in April, what promises to be one of the more interesting
sessions will focus on the relationship between insurance CIOs and their bosses, the
CEOs. This is also the focus for our cover story in this issue of ITA Pro magazine.
Those we’ve spoken with on this subject believe the relationship has evolved to
greater heights for technology leaders in the last decade and will continue to evolve as
technology plays such a huge role in the way we live and work.
The opportunity is here for CIOs to make their voices heard in the executive suite.
That may scare those who only aspired to the role of order-taker in charge of keeping
the lights on. But that is the role of an IT director and CEOs expect more from their
CIOs today. They want someone who can be strategic and help guide the enterprise.
The CIO has to “connect the dots,” according to Frank Petersmark, CIO Advocate
for X by 2.
“It’s not enough anymore for CIOs to be at the board table,” he says. “Rather than
just saying it is tough to keep old systems running you have to explain the implications
for business people and IT. It sounds mundane, but some CIOs miss on that. They miss
on rationally and pragmatically taking people through and showing them the results of
CIOs have to understand more than the technology tools. They have to understand
what each of the business units does and what technology can do to improve those op-
erations. Bob Otis, president and CEO of National Lloyds Corporation (who will speak
on this subject at ITA LIVE), expects nothing less from his technology leaders.
“I have to think about all those things when I think about strategy or I won’t know
where to go,” he says. “You won’t have a complete strategy without IT. There’s no doubt
some IT folks I’ve brought to the table would prefer to be a simple service organization
and would prefer—maybe not so much today—that I simply told them what we want
them to do. That’s not a helpful approach and IT gets a lot of grief for that. That’s how
they get left out in the first place. I don’t want them in the room if they are not offering
We talk a lot about solution providers in terms of software vendors, but the real
solution providers for insurance carriers in the second decade of the 21st Century are
the technology leaders themselves. It’s their job to make technology and business run
smoothly and one thing we know for certain: The world never goes back to the way it
used to be; it only goes forward. ITA
Robert Regis Hyle
Earning the Respect
of the CEO
THE MAGAZINE FOR INSURANCE IT & BUSINESS PROFESSIONALS
Editor in Chief
Robert Regis Hyle
Michael P. Voelker
Jason T. Williams
ITA Advisory Board
Tricia S. Blair
Lincoln Financial Group
Millers Mutual Insurance
Judith L. Haddad
Patriot National Inc.
American Family Insurance
Glatfelter Insurance Group
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ITA Pro magazine is published five
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Copyright © 2015 by the Insurance
Technology Association. All rights
reserved. No part of this publication
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February2015 // Issue 1 // Vol. 2