Photo: Oakland County, Mich., CIO Phil Bertolini and CFO Laurie Van Pelt

The concept of "shareholder value" has been influential in the private sector since it was introduced in the 1980s. This philosophy directs businesses to maximize earnings and growth, which should then be reflected in stock price. Further, it implies critical behaviors such as evaluating all strategic decisions based on their potential to create value and only carrying assets that positively influence value, according to Ann Senn and Kenneth Porrello in Decoding the CIO-CFO Relationship. The private sector has recognized that close cooperation between the CIO and chief financial officer (CFO) is essential to helping IT projects and assets maximize shareholder value.

A similar dynamic is occurring in government organizations focused on creating "public value." Public value is the combination of cost-effective program delivery and achieving outcomes of value to constituents.

Technology is a key lever for creating public value. Just to cite a few examples, it can help control costs through automation, provide consistency in service through process management and through business intelligence, it can better identify citizen demands as and whether those demands are satisfied. CIOs and CFOs in leading public-sector organizations are working together to use technology to create public value.


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Shayne C. Kavanagh  |  Contributing Writer