Most CIOs believe their organisations are ready for a proposed extension of employees’ right to ask for flexible working.

CIO50 2008: Top 10

The UK’s leading CIOs revealed…

1.Robin Dargue Royal Mail

2.David Lister Royal Bank of Scotland

3.Neil Cameron Unilever

4.Catherine Doran Network Rail

5.John Suffolk UK government

6.Gordon Lovell-Read Siemens UK

7.Paul Coby British Airways

8.Tania Howarth Birds Eye Iglo Group

9.Simon Post Carphone Warehouse

10.Ben Wishart Whitbread

At present, the right is extended to children aged up to six, but the government launched a consultation last week to discuss whether families with children aged up to 16 could also benefit from parents being at home more.

Respondents in this week’s CIO Jury poll were asked if they thought a change in the rules on flexible working would impact on their own organisations.

The vast majority – 10 out of the 12 – said it wouldn’t but one of those who said it would impact them noted the far-reaching implications, especially in the way corporate law would have to extend into what is done in the home.

Russell Altendorff, IT director at London Business School, said: “There are many issues yet to be resolved satisfactorily both in legal and in practical terms. Issues over Health and Safety at home; the combination of business, personal and leisure use of computer equipment; Data Protection Act; scope and hours of operation for hardware and software support services; the blurring of personal vs corporate responsibility for loss, and security of equipment and data; insurance for losses or breaches of internal control process or security incurred off company premises.”

Most however pointed out that their organisations had already begun to embrace remote working and so the infrastructure for more widespread flexible working was already in place.

Nick Masterson-Jones, head of IT for Vocalink, said: “This is just one more manifestation of a trend whereby employers offer greater flexibility to their staff. In response to that trend, we invested in a corporate infrastructure that gives staff access to their desktop and data in a highly secure manner but from any PC or thin client with internet access. So if we have parents who’d rather work from home late in the evening, after they’ve put the kids to bed – no problem.”

In the CIO Jury this week was:
-Ben Acheson, IT Manager, PADS Printing and Commercial Stationery
-Russell Altendorff, director ISD, London Business School
-Peter Birley, IT director, Browne Jacobson
-Nic Evans, European IT director, Key Equipment Finance
-Kevin Fitzpatrick, CIO Northern Europe, Sodexo
-Steve Gediking, head of IT and facilities, Independent Police Complaints Commission
-Madhushan Gokool, IT manager, Storm Model Management
-John Keeling, director of Computer Services, John Lewis Partnership
-Nick Masterson-Jones, director of IT, Vocalink
-Mike Roberts IT director, The London Clinic
-Richard Steel, head of ICT, London Borough of Newham
-Steve Williams, director of information systems and services, Newcastle University

Want to be part of’s CIO Jury and have your say on the hot issues for IT departments? If you are a CIO, CTO, IT director or equivalent at a large or small company in the private or public sector and you want to be part of’s CIO Jury pool, or you know an IT chief who should be, then drop us a line at