A new breed of data specialists are empowering big business. CDOs to bridge the gaps between data, people and technology

London, UK, 6 February 2015 – Experian, the global information services group, today published the findings of its “Dawn of the Chief Data Officer (CDO)” survey, confirming that an increasing number of organisations are waking up to the strategic value of data.

The study, which interviewed over 250 Chief Information Officers (CIOs) from large organisations, found that 90% of respondents feel that data is transforming the way they do business, with some 92% suggesting that a Chief Data Officer (CDO) is best placed to define data strategy and be the guardian of data quality within an organisation.

61% wanted to see a CDO hired within the next 12 months and 47% cited the sheer volume of data as a key barrier to success, preventing them from using these data assets further, to improve their interactions with audiences.

Respondents also outlined the growing need for closer collaboration between Marketing and IT teams within the business. This is likely to also change the make-up of senior leadership teams in the future, with the CDO tipped to become a senior board level role by 2020.

The study suggests that 2015 is set to be the year where this new ‘data force’ takes the lead in overseeing the use of data within organisations. Alongside the Chief Information Officer (CIO) as the point-person for guiding the use of data within the business, the relatively new, senior role of the Chief Data Officer (CDO) will be expected to navigate an increasingly complex landscape, to deliver the best results for both brands and customers.

Boris Huard, Managing Director of Experian Data Quality said:

“The ‘data force’ will have a key role at the heart of businesses. We can add Chief Digital Officer, alongside CDOs and Director of Insights, as emerging new roles which have come about in response to the pressure and opportunity presented by big data.

“What is particularly encouraging is that companies are increasingly switching on to the value of data. They are realising that more emphasis needs to be placed on data management and strategy to ensure that they are able to satisfy burgeoning customer expectations, both now and in the future.


“This new breed of data professionals will have wide-ranging impact on the way that brands interact with customers. Regardless of what industry you are operating in, your marketers are only ever as good as the data that underpins their plans, ensuring data quality is one important element of getting your interactions with the consumer right.”

“Dawn of the CDO study”: Key findings


  • 90% of respondents say that data is changing the way they do business

  •  92% think that a Chief Data Officer (CDO) is best placed to define data strategy and be the guardian of data quality within an organisation

  •  61% wanted to see a CDO hired within the next 12 months

  •  47% cited the volume of data as a key barrier, preventing them from exploiting data assets

  •  Such is the demand that CIOs believe the CDO will become an established board level role by 2020

  •  The key reasons for wanting a CDO are;
    • to capitalise on big data opportunities (44%),
    • to provide a consistent approach to de-risk data driven projects (41%) and
    • to cope with increasing regulation (38%).

  • On average, CIOs cite savings from investing in data quality tools to be less than £1million. However, comparatively, CDOs stated this to be in excess of £5million.

To request a copy of the whitepaper please contact: edq@melvillecommunications.co.uk

Or alternatively download it here - http://cdn.qas.com/media/marketing/downloads/pdf/research-papers/uk/Dawn-of-the-CDO-Report_241114.pdf

Research Methodology

254 private sector CIOs in organisations with over 500 employees completed an online survey during August 2014. Research was conducted by Loudhouse, an independent research agency based in London.  In addition, Experian Data Quality conducted 17 in- depth qualitative interviews with CDOs and senior data officers within enterprises.





Nick Jones

Head of PR

Marketing Services, UK and EMEA

T: 44 (0) 207 819 3054 | M: 44 (0) 7583 297082

E: nick.jones@experian.com


About Experian

We are the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to our clients around the world. We help businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. We also help people to check their credit report and credit score, and protect against identity theft.  In 2014, we were named by Forbes magazine as one of the ‘World’s Most Innovative Companies’.

We employ approximately 16,000 people in 39 countries and our corporate headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.

Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2014, was US$4.8 billion.

To find out more about our company, please visit http://www.experianplc.com or watch our documentary, ‘Inside Experian’.