In preparation for the launch of Australia's own CIO Executive Council I travelled to the US on a fact-finding mission to review operations since the first council was established there 12 months ago. The founder and driver of the US Council is Mark Hall, who has created one of the most successful and inspirational peer-to-peer organizations in the world.
The US Council has more than 250 members including the CIOs of FedEx, the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Pilkington. While there I attended a council conference on CIO leadership, "Developing the right stuff" and liaised on some of the other issues being covered which included disaster recovery and business continuity, electronic mail records, IT staffing recommendations, open source strategy, and IT leadership and governance.
It isn't just the US driving the agenda, executive councils are being established in the UK, Canada, Scandinavia, Germany, Israel, Brazil, China, Japan and Italy.
To local CIOs who participate in the Australian CIO Council, this international presence is a great collective power and means we get the opportunity to leverage international expertise through our peer-to-peer and instant messaging capabilities.
Members will have access to teleconferences, steering committees and task forces to improve skills as an IT leader.
Our ability to drive successful projects has never been more critical; we need access to our peers to get independent advice that doesn't include vendors. We can achieve this by working with peers and sharing what we regard as true life experiences that can be transformed into deliverables allowing us to deliver on time and within budget.
The Executive Council is in the process of establishing an advisory board that will lead different committees within the council to assist members. The launch of the Executive Council of Australia will be in late July 2005. For information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Con Colovos is executive director of the CIO Executive Council of Australia