'Increasing enterprise growth' is the number one business priority for chief information officers in 2013, it has been reported.
Research conducted by Gartner found that CIOs were primarily focused on growing their organisations, with 'delivering operational results' and 'reducing enterprise costs' also key aims.
Number four on the list of business priorities is 'attracting and retaining new customers', ahead of 'improving IT applications and infrastructure' and 'creating new products and services'.
Other business priorities in the top ten include 'creating new products and services', 'improving efficiency', 'attracting and retaining the workforce', 'implementing analytics and big data' and 'expanding into new markets and geographies'.
A role beyond the tech function
Some 67 per cent of CIOs surveyed said they have significant leadership responsibilities outside of IT.
This contrasts greatly with 2008, when almost half of CIOs had no responsibilities outside of the technology function.
"IT cannot expect to secure additional funding without assuming new responsibilities or producing new results," said Dave Aron, vice-president and Gartner fellow.
"Adapting to, and leading, in the digital world requires doing things differently, yet in ways consistent with the demands of digital technologies."
He said CIOs need to make the case that mainstream emerging mobile, big data, social and cloud technologies justify revisiting IT budget and investment levels."
IT priorities for the CIO
The Gartner study also offered insight into CIO's IT priorities, with 'analytics and business intelligence' claiming the top spot, ahead of 'mobile technologies' and 'cloud computing'.
'Collaboration technologies' designed to encourage employees to work together better came next, ahead of 'legacy modernisation' and 'IT management'.
'Customer relationship management', 'virtualisation', 'security' and 'enterprise resource planning applications completed the top ten.
The CIO study revealed that IT leaders think they are realising just 43 percent of technology's business potential.
"Digital technologies provide a platform to achieve results, but only if CIOs adopt new roles and behaviors to find digital value," said Mark McDonald, group vice-president and Gartner Fellow.
"CIOs require a new agenda that incorporates hunting for new digital innovations and opportunities, and harvesting value from products, services and operations."
Posted by Alex Boardman