As technology evolves so will the CIOs main responsibilties. The IT department will play an influential part on the business model in adding value in implementing new products and services.
This week Gartner released their ‘Hype Cycle’ for emerging trends including Blockchain, IoT and cloud which can help in transforming the business strategy.
The CIO 100 executives, discuss which new technologies they are currently investigating and developing on across their workforce.
"We are going to use IoT sensors imbedded in concrete to determine thermodynamic characteristics. This info is then stored in the cloud and used to refine the algorithms to improve accuracy. The benefit of this is a higher quality build for our customers and an improvement in efficiency of our operation."
CIO of Carillion Richard Gifford
“We are currently working on machine learning to pick up early signals of ill health. For instance, feedback loops on the early signs of sepsis, which flag before any detectable signs to the clinician. My current role is to ensure that this is implemented in line with national recording guidance which does not cover machine learning. This is currently in pilot phase in the A&E in Salford."
CIO of Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust Rachel Dunscombe
"As for wearable technology, currently I manage an electronic patient record taking feeds from wearable medical devices that provide the observations. I have also run in Bolton (and plan to at Salford) a limited pilot of sensium patches giving observations wirelessly. This enabled patients to walk around and the Wi-Fi will monitor their vital signs. The patches last five days and I am working on a future case for home use under hospital at home.
I am leading a working party on the internet of things. As a provider of housing we see massive potential for items such as smart appliances that could help in the reduction of breakdowns and so increase customer satisfaction. We are also investigating the adoption of sensors throughout homes for a range of uses, such as the provision of energy efficiency, stock condition information and potentially self-repair."
CIO at Home Group David Redpath
"We use predominantly open source technologies, which, combined with a plethora of market-leading capabilities, are all exposed as APIs to enable us to combine and configure them to exploit our existing verticals and markets through new propositions in, say, mobile apps or IoT, or to explore new propositions in new markets on the device profile of our choice. All very quickly and cost effectively."
CIO of Moneysupermarket.com, Tim Jones
"Our care and support services will also benefit from technologies such as wearables and sensors in our assisted living spaces. This is a massive area of growth for us given the pressure on health services and budgets. In particular we are exploring how the adoption of these technologies could reduce time spent in hospitals and help the NHS to maximise its budget.
We have been using drones to map our network and have an innovation group experimenting with augmented reality for customer bills, as well as finding pipes underground. I am involved with an open data project with Newcastle University to improve the sharing of underground 3D data; the aim is to reduce roadwork time in the north-east by having better information about what is underground – from soil type to pipe type”.
CIO of Northumbrian Water James Robbins
“We are watching closely the internet of things, especially how it affects the automotive industry. The connected car, the connected garage and telematics are areas that we feel could be new revenue streams for us as innovators in these areas look to make use of our data. Ensuring our data is relevant and consumable for these markets is something that our product teams are watching very closely. We are also looking closely at NoSQL technologies as alternatives ways to store our data."
CTO at Autodata Neil Brooks
“We're running a pilot with Microsoft's backing, plugging building management systems into their machine learning product, to see if we can predict maintenance cycles and energy use. I see that as a really interesting area of development, and it also ties into our IoT work."
CIO at Bellrock Chris Weston
"We have a number of wearables under evaluation, ranging from watches and fitness monitors to smart fabrics and ECG security devices. These all benefit from IoT activities that we are working with to record, and act on, based on events such as IFTTT and microservices that we develop. Smart technologies that can help in the office but can also be applied elsewhere include iBeacons and large-scale NFC readers. These technologies, coupled with innovations in blockchain technology, open up opportunities in asset tracking and fraud detection."
CIO at AstraZeneca UK David Smoley
"We're investing a lot of time and effort into our next-generation enterprise technology. Being based on web services it lends itself to integration with IoT devices (smart buildings). We can just as easily take a fault report from an air conditioning unit as a helpdesk agent, and our workflow engine then reacts in the appropriate way.
We are discussing an initiative to develop virtual reality with touch (ultrahaptics) so a surgeon can practise rare and difficult procedures. We already utilise wearables and the IOT in a number of areas, the most recent being the use of a device implanted in the body that monitors the heart and transmits data back to our consultants via a special pillow when the patient is at home sleeping(a first in the UK last year)."
CIO at Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Joanna Smith
“We are using more devices than ever before to capture and exchange information around travel. Consequently, the amount of raw data available to TfL is increasing exponentially, while the potential to distribute timely information (for example, sending alerts direct to citizens' phones in the event of a travel delay) is also increasing. To ensure we can effectively capitalise on these opportunities I have overseen the introduction of data hackathons, which are the perfect way to see what insights can be gleaned from this data and how we can use those insights.
The first data hackathon we ran was something completely new for us. It was the largest amount of cloud data we've ever provided to a team of external developers. We wanted to offer our data to people outside the transport industry to open our eyes to new possibilities, unrestricted by conventional thinking.
We work with all areas of the business to help them use technology to make improvements. For example, someone wanted to create a cycling simulator using gaming technology to test the various impacts on potential cycle lane improvements. We were able to help them create the infrastructure, meaning trials could go ahead without any risk."
CIO at Transport for London Steve Townsend
“We are actively looking into machine learning to inform the development of our systems and matching algorithms. We have established big data as one of the key themes of our R&D strategy, which has historically been almost entirely clinical, and we are working with universities and industry to develop this programme further. We have discussed wearable technologies with a number of providers as a way to prompt people to donate blood but also to track their health after donating."
CDO at NHS Blood and Transport Aaron Powell
"I have digitally disrupted the industry by leading the way with a shift to cloud based integrated solutions optimised for Mobile and Multi Channel whilst taking advantage of RFID, IOT and Mobile emerging technologies. This has resulted in considerable revenue growth, more reliable solutions and improving margins in a competitive market. In our Retail Service Business, we have delivered our in house developed Next Generation ERP system leading to operational efficiencies as well as pioneering our development of voice led wearable technology for our field workforce to enable workforce productivity gains."
CIO of Orridge Simon Kniveton
"As part of our data as an asset programme, we are delivering the tools that will enable the business to leverage its data. A fundamental element of this is the enablement of predictive and prescriptive analytics through tools such as R, Python, IBM SPSS and IBM Watson. We are actively experimenting with how these tools can improve decisions the business makes related to customer management and product/pricing development.
Trials are taking place within our healthcare company, AXA PPP healthcare, to assess how the use of wearable tech can enhance and improve the health of its customers. On internet of things we have had vehicle telematics in place for some time, and are about to commence a trial on integrating a connected home 'hub' to a home insurance product, with the aim of helping our customers make proactive decisions on how to avoid loss or damage. We are also about to launch a sharing economy product with BlaBlaCar."
Group COO and CIO at AKA Kevin Murray
“One of our core applications is built on a NoSQL database, and we often experiment with new technologies and frameworks. Others we have actively discounted – for example, 3D printing is not particularly relevant to us as insurance brokers. We remain curious and watchful around emerging technologies. More and more are experimenting with blockchain in financial services, for example, and we remain watchful until the time is right for us to join as a fast follower."
CIO at Arthur J Gallagher & Co Giles Baxter
“Our primary drive has been to create a cloud-based CAD workshop for our technical colleagues. This has led to using GPU-enabled cloud services, which allows our staff to access the full suite of CAD technology they require and to ensure that we waste no time in downloading and uploading large files between user and storage. This enables our colleagues to access heavy-duty CAD systems from any internet-connected device and removes the requirement or workstation-class hardware in RLB offices.
Under the banner of "zero infrastructure", I have sought to remove any extraneous hardware from each office. The plan is to offer Wi-Fi access, printing and nothing else in each office. This minimises physical footprint for hardware, removes potential issues from server outages and gives staff an operating environment which broadly resembles their home circumstances or those offered in a public Wi-Fi arena. Even the printing revolves around a cloud-based print server, so that staff can print to any printer in any RLB office, mitigating waste and enhancing efficiency."
Head of IT at Rider Levett Bucknall Mark Evans
“We have been investigating and implementing several enterprise apps, including some specific to property surveying, which drive great productivity improvements. We have done a lot of work on data analytics through building a Microsoft SQL data warehouse with a series of data cubes focused on key aspects, with output as 3D animations surfaced through SharePoint, and with live data linked into associated PowerPoint presentation material."
CIO at Symphony Housing Group Neil Beckingham
“Wearables and internet of things are likely to be huge in the NHS. We are looking at both of these as part of the way we offer support to vulnerable people at home: not only can we provide a safer service, but we can also prevent unnecessary admission to hospitals (which is expensive and doesn't always provide the best outcomes). I think high-volume data analytics will revolutionise health. The care. data initiative didn't take off, but it's only a matter of time before large-scale analytics offers new insights into health”.
Interim CIO at Croydon Health Service Owen Powell