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Michael Hedges

"Our role is rapidly evolving. IT is becoming more and more of a broker of services versus delivering a piece of hardware or software and hence we need to be relevant and proactive in this new role."


Michael Hedges, Medtronic, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, was named a 2010 Top 10 CIO Breakaway Leader by the CIO Leadership Network for showning outstanding ability to effectively adapt, innovate, and capitalize during challenging economic times.

Before his appointment as Medtronic CIO, Mr. Hedges held positions as Medtronic’s international information technology director and vice president of Enterprise Applications.

Mr. Hedges joined Medtronic in 2000 after holding IT leadership positions at Prime Computers, British Aerospace, Shell Oil, and Eastman Kodak and serving as a technical communications specialist with the British Army.

Under Mr. Hedges’ IT leadership, Medtronic has received many industry awards including InformationWeek 500, PilotHouse Best Overall IT Innovator, and Computerworld Top 100 Best Places to Work in IT.

Medtronic, Inc., headquartered in Minneapolis, is the global leader in medical technology –alleviating pain, restoring health, and extending life for millions of people around the world.

Challenges in technology to meet enterprise needs in 2013 and expectations

I look forward to more use of mobility, more cloud (both private and public), and the utilization of ‘big data.’ In addition, we need to be very aware of cyber security; everything we build or buy must include a security review/security element. I would expect technology providers to offer not only tools but also ideas and education on how these tools will help drive something within the business (change, growth, productivity, etc.). I also expect them to clearly articulate that buying (for example a cloud solution), may just be the start; much work may still be necessary to integrate into existing legacy systems.

Technology Trends Impacting Enterprise Business Environment

First, Mobility. This is very important and we will in the future, adopt more mobile cloud based applications. This includes personal or private clouds where employees will be able to do their jobs more effectively from anywhere at any time. Second, Big Data and Analytics. We have implemented HANA so we can leverage and use very large sets of data at great speed and use this for predictive as well as actionable analytics.

The areas in business environment where solutions do not yet exist or not up to the mark, and which if existed, would've made job easier

Although we do well in many areas, one that could always be improved is actionable analytics. We need to use data as a driver for growth and identifying new business models. The days of the one data warehouse are dead. The future is going to be about tying together multiple sources of data, both external and internal, to drive some significant event. Second, cyber security and privacy regulations are becoming big issues. We can’t know future events and their impact, so we need to constantly assess developments in this area, being careful not to minimize or overstate the situation, in order to stay ahead of these issues whenever possible.

My roles and responsibilities as a CIO

It is changing in the sense that we must become much more relevant, proactive and helpful, because with the availability of cloud and mobility systems our businesses feel they can do everything themselves. In the past they had no choice but to seek out IT for solutions.

Lessons learned as a CIO

The continuing lesson is that our role is rapidly evolving. IT is becoming more and more of a broker of services versus delivering a piece of hardware or software and hence we need to be relevant and proactive in this new role.