Critical.
Authoritative.
Strategic.
Subscribe to CIO Magazine »

Q&A: Gartner Global CIO, Darko Hrelic

Hrelic talks about ICT change within the analyst firm and why being friends with the CFO is important for CIOs.
Gartner Global CIO and senior vice president, Darko Hrelic.

Gartner Global CIO and senior vice president, Darko Hrelic.

Working on cloud, mobile and information projects within international analyst firm, Gartner, while keeping the CFO happy is a balancing act which global CIO Darko Hrelic has juggled for almost six years.

US-based Hrelic spoke with CIO Australia during his visit to the Gold Coast for Gartner’s annual Symposium/ITxpo

An expert amongst experts: Gartner CIO and senior vice president

Q&A: Good Technology CTO, Nicko van Someren

Big data to create 960k new IT jobs in APAC by 2015: Gartner

What does your role at Gartner involve?

As the global CIO of Gartner, my role is to play an integral part of innovation at the company whether that is products, customer facing or internal. It comes down to innovating new mobile applications or just new capabilities to help the business.

As CIO, do you worry that your role will be phased out because of cloud/outsourcing?

If I was thinking of my role as it was five years ago, absolutely, that [CIO] role is history. If I look at my role as being much more strategic for the company, then not at all. It’s becoming a more important role so we’re hiring [IT] people who can improve the value proposition of products that we deliver and support.

How important is it for you to have a good relationship with the CFO?

Paramount. I find ways to help the CFO meet his objectives which are financially related and in turn, he helps me to innovate. The partnership is extremely important because if the CFO just cares about shrinking the budget and the CIO only cares about getting a bigger budget it’s a mismatch. At the end of the day the company loses.

What are some of the challenges you face in the role of CIO?

The pace of change is increasing so things are getting more complicated, they are not getting simpler. Information technology needs to make things simpler because it is too complex for users as well.

Skills. If there are existing people in the organisation they need to be retrained or we need to find new people out in the market. Companies are smart enough to hold onto good [IT] people.

IT mindset change. People need to step back and say, "We’re going to be partners in this to jointly innovate new ideas." That’s critical because the complexity and volume of information out there is difficult for even technical people to keep up with.

What are some of the technology projects you have been working on?

We’re working on Gartner’s nexus of forces which includes the intersection of cloud, mobile, social and information. We are using over 12 cloud services but very strategically because we have to be careful about our data and who has access to it. The conversations that analysts have with vendors or clients cannot get out of our hands.

With mobility, we’re way down that path. As a company, 70 per cent of our people travel so laptops and mobile devices are their office. For smartphone and tablets, we offer bring your own device support. None of our staff have desktop computers, even our receptionists use notebooks. Everyone uses laptops or tablets so if there is a [natural] disaster they can work from home.

What are the three biggest issues facing CIOs today?

Having the right skills in your organisation. If you don’t have the people then it is very difficult to make progress.

Dealing with complexity and having architectures/technologies that are ready for agility. The only thing you can count on these days is that anything you are doing today, a year down the road things are going to change. Your architecture and technologies need to allow for that.

What is your favourite gadget?

I can do my work on my iPhone or iPad which is great as I don’t need to unpack my laptop.

Hamish Barwick travelled to Gartner Symposium on the Gold Coast as a guest of Good Technology

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow CIO Australia on Twitter and Like us on Facebook… Twitter: @CIO_Australia, Facebook: CIO Australia, or take part in the CIO conversation on LinkedIn: CIO Australia

Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.

References show all
Comments are now closed.
Related Coverage
Related Whitepapers
Latest Stories
Community Comments
Tags: management, Gartner, Gartner Symposium 2012, Darko Hrelic, mobility, Cloud
Latest Blog Posts
Whitepapers
  • Secure application delivery for a mobile workforce
    Mobility has given people new freedom to work anywhere, at any time - but it has also brought endless complications for IT. We show you how you can empower people to use Windows applications and native mobile apps on any type of device - with full security.
    Learn more »
  • Modernize Your Business with Oracle ERP Cloud
    If your business has plans that include aggressive growth and aspires to be a best-in-class organization, your IT systems and applications need to be up to the task. Homegrown solutions or outdated software can hamper the execution of your strategic vision. If your IT infrastructure and maintenance costs are affecting your ability to stay competitive, then a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite is well worth exploring. This eBook explores the core components of a cloud-based ERP solution that delivers enterprise-class software without sacrificing functionality or changes to business processes and with no additional cost for infrastructure and complicated integrations.
    Learn more »
  • Software Defined Protection - The Enterprise Security Blueprint
    In a world with high-demanding IT infrastructures and networks, where perimeters are no longer well defined and where threats grow more intelligent every day, we need to define the right way to protect enterprises in the ever-changing threat landscape. Download today to define your security blueprint.
    Learn more »
All whitepapers
rhs_login_lockGet exclusive access to Invitation only events CIO, reports & analysis.
Salary Calculator

Supplied by

View the full Peoplebank ICT Salary & Employment Index

Recent comments

Computerworld
ARN
Techworld
CMO