Eli Lilly, a global healthcare leader renowned for uniting compassion with innovation, appointed Diogo Rau as its Executive Vice President and Chief Information and Digital Officer in May 2021, signifying the health giant’s strategic focus on enhancing its digital capabilities, information technology, cybersecurity, and data science functions.
Rau, a Stanford University graduate with a bachelor's in computer science and a master's in industrial engineering and engineering management, brings a wealth of experience to his role. Prior to joining Lilly, he played a pivotal role at Apple, Inc., where he spent a decade spearheading the development and implementation of technology supporting the Apple Online Store and retail stores. His expertise encompasses e-commerce platforms, mobile point of sale systems, and the Apple Store App.
Before his tenure at Apple, Rau served as a partner at McKinsey & Company, leading the North America IT organization and governance practice. Notably, he kickstarted his career as a consultant at A.T. Kearney – and later founded GiftGateway, a software company focused on bringing rewards and recognition online.
When Rau accepted his current position, David Ricks, Lilly's Chairman and CEO, expressed excitement about the CIDO’s appointment, emphasizing the company's commitment to leveraging data, analytics, and machine learning to enhance experiences and outcomes for patients. Ricks underscored Rau's role in steering a transformation in how Lilly discovers, develops, manufactures, and commercializes innovative medicines.
Rau's responsibilities, encompassing the traditional CIO role alongside digital, advanced analytics, and information security, align with Lilly's vision of shaping the future of medicine creation, manufacturing, and distribution. Rau sees the combination of these roles as a powerful strategy, avoiding friction between departments and fostering collaboration between technology and data science teams.
In an interview with Deloitte, Rau highlighted the importance of consolidating roles, noting that combining the CIO and Chief Digital Officer roles makes sense in the evolving technological landscape. He stressed the benefits of bringing technology and data science together to streamline processes and enable collaboration between experts in machine learning and data analysis.
Expressing his enthusiasm for joining Lilly at a transformative period, Rau emphasized the potential of machine learning to open new opportunities and strengthen relationships with patients and physicians. His sentiments align with Lilly's longstanding commitment to innovation and creating high-quality medicines.
As Rau continues to steer Lilly into the world of digitalization, his multifaceted role reflects the company's dedication to staying at the forefront of technological advancements, with a clear focus on driving digital transformation in the healthcare sector.