October 28, 2004 A definition of the role of today's financial services CIO would have to be as complex as the job itself. Faced with a frenzy of mergers and acquisitions, demands to streamline and integrate legacy systems, compliance requirements and customer service challenges, banks' top technologists have more on their plates than ever before.

Accordingly, the financial services CIO has evolved into more of a business-oriented executive than a technology professional. To succeed, banks' technology leaders must go beyond rhetoric and truly align their IT organizations with enterprisewide business goals. But not every executive is able to manage this balancing act. Bank Systems & Technology identified six top financial technology executives who succeed at this task. This special report presents insights into how they influence their companies' success and analyzes the changing role of the bank CIO.