Our second episode of ‘Diary of a CIO’ is with Richard Gifford, CIO at Unipart Logistics.

An intro to Richard…

Richard is a successful CIO leading digital transformations and high-performing teams to deliver significant bottom line results.

Richard boasts over 20 years experience and has held tech leadership roles across a range of industries spanning supply chain and logistics; property and construction; manufacturing and distribution, leisure, including both large and small enterprises.

An intro to Unipart Logistics…

Unipart Logistics are a supply chain expert providing consultancy, logistics and supply chain services across a range of sectors including Aerospace, Automotive, Consumer, Health, Technology and Utilities.

They are experienced in developing and managing resilient, optimised supply chains with advanced digital capabilities including data science, machine learning and predictive analytics. These capabilities allow Unipart Logistics’ customers to improve their supply chains by creating actionable insights that enable them to leverage their unique product and service advantages, and combat the challenges facing their own sectors.

Whether you need to scale up your supply chain, improve resilience and stock visibility, reconfigure your supply chain quickly to meet changing needs or introduce automation to reduce waste, improve quality and sustainability, or address workforce instability, they’ve done it before and work with customers to make their supply chain a point of difference.

The interview…

What’s the biggest priority for a CIO in today’s market?

Clearly are market trends, but looking at the role to start with… Firstly it’s progressing the geospatial journey and delivering high quality digital mapping to our customers. It’s an organisation which started it’s digital journey quite some time ago, so ahead of the curve in that respect. This gives us the opportunity to bring in new methodologies and we’re looking at innovation and drive that forwards – the whole delivery piece is key.

Other priorities are constantly driving the cyber journey forwards and innovation; using AI and trying to find good use cases to really unlock potential in the business.

What have been the key changes to the role of a CIO?

You can see from a few grey hairs I’ve been around for a while. But the role really started around compute I suppose, and crudely put, a tin of wires and networking with big main frame computers – all really around data processing.

The role has moved from what was mainly around infrastructure and processing – what we used to call MIS – to a point where now we have a seat at the table, we’re looking at driving new business models and using enabling technology to do that.

There has been a colossal shift from being pure technologists, to being pure business people that understand technology.

To access the full interview, check out the video below.