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3 Reasons Businesses Want Chief Data Officers



A Chief Data Officer (CDO) is a relatively new C-Suite position that sometimes overlaps with responsibilities of a Chief Information Officer. Nearly 64% of leading corporations have hired a CDO since 2018. CDOs are growing in prominence and relevance in correlation with the growth and prominence of data in business. There is some variance in what businesses expect from their CDO, but the position indicates a shift in business stressing that data is an essential part of modern businesses and needs to be represented at the highest level.

What does a Chief Data Officer do?

The CDOs responsibilities depends on the nature and size of your business. Typically, a CDO will oversee any data related endeavors including data management, data governance, and data strategy. In most cases your CDO reports to your Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or Chief Operations Officer (COO). 


Deloitte research designates the CDO as the “catalyst” for innovation within an organization. A CDO has the ability to change and elevate business by leveraging data and analytics. They can use carefully developed insights to know when to harness technology and software to elevate business strategies to become more agile and competitive.

Chief Data Officers are meant to be disruptive. They have the ability to look at how a business is and has been operating versus how it could be operating. 

Growth & Profitability

The skills that a CDO and more data-oriented business practices can reduce operating costs. Deloitte found that data driven business models “improve customer experience, increase loyalty and retention, and reduce the overall cost to serve.”

A CDO is not only responsible for sustaining and simply just growing a company’s profit margin. They are expected to help develop operational efficiencies by leveraging data and analysis to maximize profits. In 2015, an IBM report found that nearly two-thirds of businesses who had a CDO on board were outperforming their competitors.


In a CDO’s venture to create functional strategies for a business they also manage data security internally and externally.

A CDO can review an operational structure and work with other executives to determine the optimal place for user controls, financial controls, and cybersecurity efforts. We’re in a time where data is crucial which also means data must be protected fiercely. Deloitte reports that a CDO, in the capacity as a strategist, is responsible for enhancing risk management and compliance, and security.

For many years data was not as integral part to business at least not the extent that it is valued today. 90% of the data available in 2018 had been created in the previous two years. But almost 24% of businesses without a CDO report that they had no single person who could be held accountable for decisions regarding data and analysis.

 A CDO can impact your business in many ways. Bringing a CDO on board empowers your staff with resources available to them improving job satisfaction and employee retention. The impact of data strategizing in business is not one to be ignored.

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