Richtopia Top 100 CIO

Richtopia has named Brian Thomas to the list of the Top 100 Most Influential Information Technology Officers in the World, or Top 100 Global CIOs.  Brian placed #43 on the list.  The full article has been archived, but you could read the full article here.

Brian has been featured in several other prominent publications and magazines. He’s contributed dozens of articles and white papers to many top-tier platforms.

Richtopia is an international effort to establish a more prosperous and sustainable world in which all people are rich in knowledge, resources, and possibilities. This includes featuring some of the top influencers in the world, such as the esteemed Top 100 Global CIOs.

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CIOs have an inherent duty to demonstrate the value of their departments, and this is never more true than with IT. It’s the same across other platforms of a business, from sales to finance to operations. With technology becoming more and more commoditized, companies are measuring the value of their IT departments, and thus services, in regards to the preservation of business value, creating benchmarks as a result of those outcomes, points out CIO. NO matter what department you’re talking about, the same principles of revenue generation and top-notch operations are used to not only evaluate but also prioritize and measure various projects to boost shareholder value. Here’s how CIOs can demonstrate the value of IT.

The IT department in any given company is an important cog in the output machine. Take a mobile sales platform for a healthcare EMR system, for example. If something fails at the IT level, the whole system gets hung up, resulting in the possibility of a patient not gaining access to the medication they need to be healthy. It’s too easy to imagine a bunch of IT pros sitting in a back room somewhere far removed from the daily operations of a business. Not so. They have just as much impact on the organization’s failure or success as anyone else.


Being flexible in an ever-demanding and complex environment is an important facet of an IT department, one that can make or break the operational capacity of an organization. As such, IT is required to provide more service and solutions above and beyond just “keeping the lights on.” In fact, IT and its partnership with business balance both past and present collaborations to determine future successes. Because IT is most useful when projects are delivered successfully to the end consumer, its value is dependent on persuading management to measure positive value-added contributions as well as maintain a steady presence — even despite such a complex environment.

Business Capability

Much more than a technological-minded organism, IT offers a great value to the business capabilities of a given company, not just in the area of technology capability and contributions. IT as a cohesive unit can provide valuable input on business decisions, leading to solutions that benefit the company as a whole. So what can the CIO and IT do together to demonstrate effectiveness to the rest of the organization?

Business operates on a principle of “what’s in it for me?” — after all, this is how competition thrives. Therefore, IT needs to:

  • Realize what their pain points are
  • Identify areas of improvement, specifically in relation to IT
  • Provide a strategic advantage from a productivity perspective
  • Work on developing a partnership mentality
  • Demonstrate value instance by instance, with clear objectives

The Value of IT

As the business strategist, the CIO needs to ensure IT’s strategic value is visible to the rest of the organization. Their position of leadership enables them to execute IT strategy, goals and objectives, and ensure they are aligned with the culture of the company as a whole. Driving business process improvements, IT becomes just as important a link in the chain as every other department when it comes to solutions that align with the corporate vision.

Michael AldridgeAs the leader of the PMO in KC, Brian led the organization through significant change. The outcome of his work has created an environment where the business can make better, more well informed decisions about its strategic projects. Brian’s robust knowledge about IT and healthcare, along with his dedication make him a huge asset to any team. I would love the opportunity to work with him again.

~Michael Aldridge

Michael Aldridge Bio

Former CIO with City of Lawrence. Former CIO with Johnson County KS Government. Former ACO Executive Director with Aledade.

With over twenty-five years’ experience working with Information Technology, Michael has knowledge in all aspects, including system engineering, operations, programming, data center design, LAN/WAN, help-desk, cybersecurity and business continuity.

The majority of Michael’s experience has been in healthcare, where he had the privilege to help improve care locally and nationally. Michael has worked in a variety of settings, including: small community hospitals, critical access and rural hospitals, FQHCs, RHCs, large health systems, ACOs, mental health centers and public health departments.

As the CIO with Johnson County Government, Michael Aldridge worked with a team of nearly 100 staff and a budget of ~$18M. Together JoCo served a diverse and expanding population through five agencies and 34 county departments. More than 3,800 public servants are dedicated to helping Johnson County remain a safe, vibrant community. We served approximately 575,000 residents (the most populous of all Kansas Counties).

With tw-Security Michael worked as part of a strong team of nationally recognized cybersecurity professionals experienced in privacy, security and risk management. They served as virtual information security officers, conduct risk analysis, provide cybersecurity program support, disaster recovery planning, OCR audit preparation, and generally worked to make our teams stronger.

Now with Gartner, Michael serves on the Research and Advisory Team focusing on Business Continuity and Risk Management.