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A Deeper Look At Digital Transformation Officer

The number of companies appointing a chief digital transformation officer (CTO) grows rapidly. Let’s find out more about this CTO role.

The reason why companies create that role? Drive change and growth.

What Is A Chief Digital Transformation Officer?

The role name is abbreviated as CTO, not to be confused with the Chief Technology Officer. It is a C-suite position responsible for implementing organizational changes. Furthermore, the purpose of those changes is to drive new growth. 

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For instance, both logistics group UPS and luxury retailer Neiman Marcus appointed their first-ever CTOs in November 2018. Here are a few of their responsibilities:

  • Commercialize new ideas
  • Spearhead growth initiatives
  • Facilitate change management

Afterward, another US retailer also appointed their first CTO in January 2019. The CTO is responsible for developing strategic initiatives for the 116-year-old company.

Such positions are not entirely new. However, digital transformation (DT) leadership positions grow because of the increasing digital disruptions across all industries. Furthermore, research by DBT Center reported that more than 75% of executives now believe that disruptions will bring major changes to their respective companies.

This shows that digital transformation runs at a very fast pace. Moreover, executives feel their impact more lately.

Key Tasks Of A Chief Digital Transformation Officer

A CTO must be prepared to directly oversee or facilitate the following tasks. That is to successfully mobilize resources and enable connections.

Customer journey mapping

A CTO must understand how the customer journey impacts mapping and analysis. Furthermore, the CTO) must regularly assess himself/herself on creating innovative ideas. They must continuously think of ways on how to better connect with consumers. Moreover, a CTO is responsible for developing ways of providing smoother customer service.

Business architecture

A CTO maps how the resources of companies relate to one another. The CTO also ensures he/she has a deep understanding of the roles of each team and individuals. Hence, the CTO can better orchestrate the resources needed when change is necessary.

Communications and training

CTOs are also teachers. They develop ways on how to effectively train employees on DT. Furthermore, a CTO educates the company members on why the company needs to transform. A CTO educates members of all levels of the organization.

Internal venture funding

CTOs are also responsible for setting up funds for digital transformation. They create persuasive reports for stakeholders. Furthermore, the stakeholders must realize that the investment for DT is worth it.

Business model design

A CTO must well understand customer expectations. Moreover, the CTO must have insights into what the customer will pay for. Hence, a solid foundation in competitive intelligence is a must for this task. 

Capability assessment

A CTO assesses the readiness and availability of the organization’s resources. The CTO also identifies the capability gaps before those gaps create damages. Hence, this results in prioritizing investments to close the gaps.


If your company recently appointed a chief digital transformation officer, strive in building a strong rapport. That is between the CTO role and division and functional leaders. The job titles and roles might be different. But all leaders have one goal for DT. That is to have a successful DT that will generate more revenue and make the consumers happier. 

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