CIOs Share Their Favorite Work-From-Home Gadgets

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All they ask for is a nice desk and a laptop to walk in

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Dave Williams, chief information and digital officer at pharmaceutical manufacturer Merck & Company, and Francesco Tinto, CIO at drugstore chain Walgreens Boots Alliance. Inc.,

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Both named the laptop as their tech device. “I’m not a big gadget guy,” admitted Mr. Tinto.

Health insurer Anthem Inc.’s CIO Anil Bhatt and mortgage finance giant Fannie May’s CIO Ramon Richards cited their Apple Inc.

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iPhones as their favorite work-from-home gadgets. Mr Richards also praised his Apple Watch. “It’s really just about staying connected. In a weird way, working from home feels like a lot more connectivity,” he said.

“Many of us didn’t anticipate that we would spend so much time in front of our computers,” said Shadman Zafar, CIO, Global Consumer Bank at Citigroup Inc. He makes the most of that time. elliptical machine. “This gadget helped me stay active throughout the day even while sitting at my desk,” he said. In addition to helping matters, the Herman Miller chair Mr. Zafar cited as his other favorite gadget.

Rajat Taneja, President, Technology, Payments Company Visa Inc.,

Listed his digital exercise system, Tonal, as his favorite gadget. “It allows me to have a higher energy when I work out because exercise keeps my well-being balanced,” he said.

Brian Rice, CIO of Cardinal Health Inc., said, “I couldn’t imagine living without Zoom. Many CIOs have listed peripherals that cater to videoconferencing as their favorite gadget. Paul von Autenreid, Biopharmaceutical Company CIO at Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

, and Carmen Vankoff, CIO at discount chain Dollar General Corporation

, both mentioned owning a good microphone. “I think we have all experienced many examples of people struggling with the audio I can hear,” said Mr. Wenkoff.

Eric Johnson, CIO, software company Momentive Global Inc.,

Swear by a good headset. “There’s a lot of noise and distraction in your home and your world,” he said, “it allows you to be kind of laser focused, and I think it’s a lot better and busier.”

Jack McCarthy, CIO at the State of New Jersey judiciary, has a lot to say about his noise-canceling headphones. “The ability to have a conference, conference call, or even just listen to music without interrupting everyone else in the house is paramount to the success of working from home,” he said.

Sticking with videoconferencing peripherals, Mr. McCarthy also celebrated his Ring Light webcam. “Having consistent light eliminates some problems depending on where the sun is hitting the windows.”

Ed McLaughlin, President, Operations and Technology, payments company MasterCard Inc.,

Cobbled together a lighting solution. His favorite gadget is a table lamp covered with a face mask.

“At the beginning of the pandemic, when everything suddenly shifted to Zoom and teams, I found the lighting in my room was terrible for video,” he said. “Taking inspiration from the broadcast, I grabbed whatever was available (a few extra desk lamps and a white surgical mask) and mocked up studio lighting diffusers.”

For Edward Wagner, CIO at commercial real estate company Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.,

Happiness is an uplifting standing desk. “I can’t believe I’ve ever been without my Uplift standing desk,” he said. “The lower back pain has almost disappeared from sitting for hours.”

The desk of Mark Spikerman, CIO of drug wholesaler AmerisourceBergen, must be quite large. How to support her favorite gadget: three monitors?

For some IT executives, it’s caffeine before coding. Software company Zendesk. Colleen Berub, CIO in Inc.,

She credits her “super-automatic espresso machine” for turning her trips to the local coffee shop. Mark Brooks, CIO, managed-care provider Sentine Corporation

, celebrates your USB-enabled coffee mug hotly.

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