I will never agree with the view that IT is a cost center. It may sound very cliched but I strongly believe that IT is a differentiator and an enabler. Treating IT as a cost center is an incorrect thinking and a very wrong business model.
IT is inextricably intertwined with all business units such as marketing. It helps gather business data for making astute business decisions, and competitive intelligence data for finance, and thereby contributes to the generation of revenue.
IT is ubiquitous, and a company depends on the CIO to advance the interests and strategy of the corporation. CIO works hand-in-glove with the CEO/CFO.
If IT is viewed as a cost center, then all companies would try to keep IT costs as low as possible. But the fact is all companies invest strategically information resources in order to remain competitive, innovative, growth-oriented and ultimately become successful.
So, these are investments, not merely costs.
Many of the software developed by us are monetized, besides serving the basic purpose of fulfilling the customer needs, and generate revenue for the company. These software are business drivers for us.
IT operates as if it is competing with outside providers, continuously benchmarking its costs and service levels against the market.
Look at Google or Amazon. They went from being an online store to an online shopping mall, to an online cloud computing technology provider.
It's all about IT and business collaborating together to transform a company; and IT operating as a profit center.
In all this, CIO is a visionary who can turn the fortunes and make IT profitable.