AMD information head calls for team work

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AMD information head calls for team work

The Chief Information Officer’s role in a company is evolving according to a Forbes interview with AMD's CIO.

Ahmed Mahmoud says "The very traditional way is for CIOs to be cost-optimisers… the big challenge in the future is how to bring operational excellence to an organisation.”

Mahmoud goes on to say that you can’t do anything without systems, as systems help to optimise all commodities - and it’s technology that gets you this far.

Back in the day the CIO would have been called in when a department was ready to automate. Now, however, they are brought in to help establish the whole process.

Mahmoud says the job is to “establish, measure and optimise a process” within the business.

One of the biggest changes for CIOs, according to Mahmoud, is the fact that they are becoming part of a team – integrated in most business decisions, not just doing one job and one job only.

"It takes a team. If I don't have the skills, I need to build a team around me that does. You start seeing people on the CIO staff with very different backgrounds," explains Mahmoud.

Although the CIO has this team, Mahmoud says it is a hard task trying to find the expertise, as smaller companies don’t have much opportunity to rotate people around.

In addition to everything else expected of the modern CIO, Mahmoud says that cutting power consumption and virtualisation is the ‘bread and butter’ for this job.

“You have to optimise your server utilisation and do labour arbitrage and have the right blended-rate for your projects,” he says.

Mahmoud finishes by saying that in the past 15 years, CIOs have fallen into the enterprise resource planning trap. “But if you don't optimise your processes, all you get is an automated mess.”
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