Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey named in WSJ.com’s article “Quest Diagnostics Combines IT, Digital Role With New Tech Chief” on February 20, 2019
Quest Diagnostics Inc. this week named a chief information and digital officer, combining two enterprise technology roles, as digital tools continue to expand beyond providing back-room business support and into strategic data management and analytics.
Gabrielle Wolfson, a former Xerox Corp. chief information officer, took on the dual role earlier this month at the medical diagnostic-information provider known for blood work, urinalysis and other laboratory tests, a company spokesperson said.
She replaced the company’s former CIO, Lidia Fonseca, who left the company at the end of last year.
Under Ms. Fonseca, the Secaucus, N.J.-based company sought to capitalize on its stockpile of data, in part by developing data analytics services for hospitals and health insurance firms – efforts that began in 2015.
Two years ago, it expanded its data-analytics services, working with International Business Machines Corp., large medical organizations and other partners to pool data and apply artificial intelligence to generate medical reports and treatment plans for physicians.
To deal with the rise of data analytics and AI in recent years, roughly a quarter of companies worldwide have a chief digital officer, a threefold increase from three years ago, according to a joint report last year by Harvey Nash and KPMG. The results were based on a survey of 3,958 IT leaders at companies in a range of industries across 84 countries.
Among respondents, 71% said the strategic influence of the CIO was growing, with a growing number of firms adopting an enterprise-wide digital strategy. “It is likely that, in addition to increased hiring of the CDO, a range of technology leaders may now also be responsible for digital,” the report said.
Mario Faria, a vice president of Gartner Inc.’s research board, said the growing range of enterprise IT services offered by cloud computing providers is giving CIOs greater bandwidth to focus on broader digital strategies.
“More and more businesses are expecting IT to be more than just back-room support,” Mr. Faria said.
He said companies need to look at “where they stand and what type of problems they want to solve,” in order to determine who should be put in charge of IT, data analytics or both: “There are different models for companies to pursue, and there is no right or wrong,” he said.
As CIO at Xerox since 2016, Ms. Wolfson led both the company’s technology infrastructure and digital business efforts. She was previously CIO at Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Integra Life Sciences and Par Pharmaceutical.
Steve Rusckowski, Quest’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, called Ms. Wolfson a “dynamic business and technology leader with a proven record of harnessing technology and data to create strong businesses.”
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