Slawek Kierner, SVP and Chief Data and Analytics Officer, Humana and Wendy Harrington, Chief Data and AI Officer, TIAA

Show Notes:

As more business decisions are driven by data, the work of a chief data officer is more in demand than ever. What challenges and opportunities does that bring? In this episode, you’ll hear Slawek Kierner, SVP and chief data and analytics officer at Humana, and Wendy Harrington, chief data and AI officer at TIAA, discuss the future of the chief data officer role in a preview of a panel session from our upcoming Data Strategy & Insights event.

The episode starts with a discussion of recent projects that exemplify the value of a well-run data organization. Harrington discusses TIAA’s launch of its Nuveen subsidiary to help its investor customers gain more insights and leverage data to make informed decisions. Kierner highlights the role that predictive data played in Humana launching an initiative during the pandemic to assist members who were struggling with food insecurity.

From there, the conversation turns to what “data culture” actually means and why it matters. Harrington says one of the hallmarks of a true data culture is that you’re using data to make the biggest decisions for the company. “That’s a challenge for companies where historically you couldn’t trust the data,” she says. As an example, she says TIAA relies heavily on data to ensure its clients are on track for their desired retirements. Adding to that, Kierner explains that in healthcare, companies can use data and AI to streamline the administrative work their clinicians do, which can improve healthcare outcomes.

Later in the episode, the guests discuss how data executives balance conflicting priorities. Harrington walks through three levels of priorities she sees for today’s data executives, and Kierner discusses the importance of data governance and integrity to drive AI and cloud initiatives, emphasizing that ethical AI is a high priority.

If you want to hear a more in-depth conversation on this topic, register for our upcoming Data Strategy & Insights event on November 18–19. Both Harrington and Kierner will be participating in a panel discussion exploring the future of the CDO role.