Joe McKendrick of ZDnet wrote a blog commenting on my article Chief API officer. You can read it here.
He makes a couple of valid observations which deserves some clarification.
“CMOs may also help reinvent the business as a cloud provider in its own right — even if the business is something other than technology.” – I agree. This is due to the fact that IT is already crunched for capital and struggling to come up with money to spend on new platforms. CMO not only has more money but can just shift the spending habits from spending on other marketing and revenue generating channels to this newer channel which has more potential.
“And CEOs and CFOs may like this new direction, since the CMO’s job is all about creating new business.” – I agree. I have seen this time and again. There are customers, Aetna is a prime example, who run (or endorse) the API programs out of the CEO office. Watch out for my follow up article where I discuss this in more detail.
“Is this a good thing? Enterprise technology has become incredibly complex, and it takes very technically proficient individuals to understand and guide the business to invest wisely and avoid costly security errors. Plus, many of the consumerish services being adopted by marketing departments are relatively simple compared to the programming and administration that goes into enterprise IT systems.” – This is debatable. First of all, we are not trying to create a new trend, just trying to embrace the trend. That is IT spending being supported by other organizations that are cash rich as opposed to cash strapped IT operations. Plus, when you invest just purely on the opex model, as opposed to capex model, their expenses are relatively cheaper (on a yearly/ usage model basis, not on a TCO basis which is another big debate). Ultimately, what I am suggesting is that while embracing this trend, provide the other organizations with a more mature, robust, and secure solution that will have an oversight and governance of a mature corporate IT unit even though it is owned, operated, measured and managed by people outside corporate IT.