Phil Jordan has won the coveted European CIO of the Year award. Jordan, Group CIO at Telefonica, one of the world’s largest telecoms and digital services organisations, has been with the Spain based organisation for four years, having joined as European CIO in 2011.
Group CIO at Telefonica is one of the largest CIO roles in Europe, the organisation provides network services across Spain, South America, Asia as well as Central and North America. Until recently it was the owner of the O2 mobile telecoms service in the UK.
Jordan has been managing one of the largest transformation programmes in Europe and within the networks sector. Telefonica has a unique market position with strong growth in its traditional fixed line businesses in the Americas whilst digital services, both direct to consumers and in the business-to-business space, are the growth opportunities in Europe.
Jordan and I recently caught up and he revealed to me: “Allowing complexity and legacy investment to grow will strangle the business,” he said of the necessity to transform the business. “We are replacing the entire customer facing IT stack in 16 different countries in parallel with strong benefits and proof points of transformation already in countries such as Mexico and Argentina. IT will emerge as a different function that will be customer- and data-centric. It is the ‘I’ in IT we need to focus on.”
CIONet, a global network for the CIO community produces the European CIO of the Year Awards and in recent years UK contenders have included London 2012 Olympics CIO Gerry Pennell.
Jordan was up against an impressive array of CIOs for the prestigious 2016 award including Dr. Sebastian Saxe, CIO & CDO of Hamburg Port Authority, one of Europe’s busiest and most critical shipping ports, Birgitta Brijs, COO of Worldline the smartcard provider and the UK’s Anna Barsby of retailer Halfords and soon to be CIO of the Morrisons supermarket chain.
In a bad week for the standing of Britain in Europe (political or sporting) Jordan joked, “Nice to win in Europe”.