Telefonica Group is a Spanish broadband and telecommunications provider operating in 24 countries and serving around 323.1 million customers worldwide, best known in the UK as the parent to mobile network O2.

Former Vodafone CIO Phil Jordan became European CIO of Telefonica in July 2010, and was also CIO of O2 UK before becoming Global CIO in March last year, overseeing the company's worldwide operations.

Touted by the CIO 100 judging panel as one to watch over the coming years as the transformations at Telefonica begin to really change the way the company operates, Jordan moves even higher in the CIO 100 for his global leadership and digital project delivery. The judging panel was impressed with the level of delivery in the last 12 months and struggled with the decision between Stephen Kneebone, CIO of Nissan Europe, and Jordan.

Both CIOs are a testament to the skills the UK produces to create CIOs with the size of roles that these two have. For 2014 the difference between the two leaders really was microscopic. In the end, a cold hard analysis of the sectors they are in, led the panel to believe that making a car manufacturer understand digital was a slightly harder challenge than the same journey for a company whose heritage is telecommunications. This is no way distracts from the achievements of Jordan at Telefonica, business change and significant levels of delivery are hard no matter the organisation.

What the judges said:

"He's done a lot of IT change and he is working on a number of fronts at the very top. He does have a very big budget and team to achieve that." Ian Cox

"The supplier set is very traditional and that may hold them back in the future." Jerry Fishenden

"Telefonica almost has a two speed economy of its European, data heavy customers and the fast developing, but still large voice users in Latin America. So perhaps the vendor set suit that" Mark Chillingworth

"I'm impressed with how far he has gone in a year." Mike Altendorf

What is your job title?
Global CIO Telefonica

When did you start your current role?
September 2011

Have you completed an MBA?

Order the following sources of advice/information by value to you:
1. In-house
2. Peer group
3. Consultant
4. Vendors
5. Analyst

Technology strategy and spending

What is the major transformational IT project that has been recently completed, or is underway at your organisation?
Continuing a major and end to end transformation of IT in Telefonica. Significant success and progress in 2013. Summary against the three main pillars of the Global IT Strategy;  

1. Consolidate Commodity IT

  • Expansion of Global Technology Shared Services – 3 to 11 countries & Best IT Operational Performance in Telefonica history in 2013
  • Completion of strategic Tier 3/4 Datacenter build - €270m invested delivered on time and to budget
  • Multi-Country midrange consolidation & virtualisation into Private Cloud (Largest in Europe) - Increasing number of production services running in Spain
  • Further optimisation of LatAM Technology infrastructure – 1 DC closure every 8 weeks in Latin America
  • Further expansion of Global SAP initiative focussed on Procurement, Supply Chain and Inventory
  • Global Business Intelligence initiative to deploy standardised, converged Big Data platform in multiple operating companies

2. Simplify & Transform Applications

  • Business Simplification – 1139 applications decommissioned in 2013 from Global IT Landscape & massive product rationalisation
  • Greenfield Business Transformations underway in 6+ countries
  • Telefonica 3.0 Blueprint phase 1 defined and delivered in first country in 11 months, zero customisation from OOTB approach
  • Multi-Country, reuse approach defined and contracted with partner for 3 countries
  • Incubated new entrant into BSS for Telco with a Greenfield award in 1 LatAM country in 2013

3. Empower Digital Telco

  • Standardised Digital Product & Service integration across Telefonica in 2013
  • Implemented standarised and convergent Business intelligence platforms in many countries
  • First commercial Big Data Products and Services live
  • Launched IT to I3 skills, culture and organisational transformation to drive form traditional IT function to a new Digital I3 based on Innovation, Integration and Information.

What impact will it/does it have on the organisation?
IT recognised at the heart of business transformation and also to be leading the transformation in the Group
Telefonica now leading in IT efficiency in competitive industry peer group
YOY 2013 IT costs reducing for the first time in company history but highest operational performance
Contributing to approximately14Bn Euro Debt reduction in 15 months and Group returning to revenue growth
IT and Product Development has been the driving force in Telefonica being disruptive in many markets with removal of handset subsidy, quad-play bundles and disconnecting the device from the communications services contract enhancing customer choice and experience
2014 shows a 65% increase in IT Transformation spend whilst overall IT costs are flat as run and grow is optimised

What new strategic technology deals has your organisation struck and with whom?
Largest European Mid-Range Modernisation and Virtualisation with IBM
Major movement to the cloud in Workplace via Office365 deal with Microsoft
Major Cloud Apps deal for B2B Segment with
Multi-Country Greenfield Apps Transformation based on heavy reuse with Amdocs

Name your strategic technology suppliers?

What is the IT budget?
2.xBn Euro

How much is the IT operational spend compared to the revenue or company turnover as a percentage?
Around 4%

What is the strategic aim of the CIO and IT operations for the next financial year?
Maintain Operational Excellence for our customers
Deliver major transformations in infrastructure, Datacenter Consolidation, major Application Transformation in more than 10 countries, Keep expanding and exploiting our Global Technology Shared Services
Continue our journey from IT to I3

Transformation achievements

Would you describe the CIO role as a transformation leader in your organisation?
Absolutely, IT and my role are leading the transformation of Telefonica
Describe the transformations you have led / been involved in, how did they transform operations, customer experience or the organisation?
previous answers given cover this.

Beyond technology, can you describe a business transformation programme that you own or contribute to?
I own the definition and delivery of a complete greenfield business process blueprint for a new Telefonica. This is enabled by technology but it focussed on process and policy definition for the future

I am also the owner and sponsor of a Global leadership programme we call 'leading high performance teams'. This is a exec level programme to enhance leaderships skills an specifically focus on the characteristics of high performance teams and how you create them.

What key technologies are being considered to enable transformation?
Cloud of all types, SaaS for Applications, PaaS for innovation purposed, IaaS as a model for sharing technology in the group via private cloud
Big Data Technologies
Virtualisation of types to support sharing and remote service delivery
Digital Technologies generally as we move our channels and customer interaction to Digital

What percentage of your applications / infrastructure is run from the Cloud?
10-15% and growing fast

How is the use by employees of their own technology, use of mobiles and social networking impacting operations, customer experiences or the organisation at present?
We have been embracing employee technology and social networking for sometime. We have multiple implementation of BYOD technology and in addition have implemented in July a new digital workplace for the top 2000 worldwide that is entirely cloud based but fully open to the internet to encourage a full digital experience. This has the normal protection you would expect but has changed the trust and implication we place on the behaviour of our top executives. This was delivered as Windows8 on smartphone and new device with o365 and cloud based capabilities

In relation to Shadow IT, we have been systematically moving shadow IT functions where we find them into our Global IT Shared Services Company. We have addressed many areas in the Global Corporation over 2013 and will continue to do this where it is required and move effective both from a cost and operational perspective

Where do you seek transformational inspiration from?
Our Customers! We are striving to deliver what they want now and in the future. I am lucky to work for an inspirational leader in Telefonica who shares my excitement and vision for both our business and IT.

Beyond that, I look at and enjoy my peer group to see help me understand what is working or not across industries and companies.

The CIO role in the business

Who do you report to?

Do you have a seat on the board?

How often do you meet with the CEO?

Does your organisation have a digital leader and what is the difference in their responsibilities to yours?
No, we have a Digital Business Unit but the Technology responsibility is still mine.

What percentage of IT budget do you control and what percentage of IT budget does your digital peer hold?
I control 100% of the IT Budget

The IT department

How many staff make up the IT team?(What is the split between in-house/outsourced staff)
6000 internal and anything upto 40,000 globally.

Describe the CIO's management team, do you have direct reports that develop the relationship and services between the business and IT?
My team is comprised of;
Country CIOs (functional reporting line, geographical is with Country CEO)
Tech Shared Services Company CEO
Chief Architect
Global Director of Transformation & Performance Management
Global IT Financial Controller
Global IT HR Director

And how many log-in accounts do you issue across you organisation?

What is the primary technology platform? ( for example ERP, Website, trading system)
Global/Corporate : ERP, Sales Force Management, DataWarehouse / Country : BSS/OSS Systems, Web Channels