Deloitte’s recent CIO Survey 2014, reports on how CIOs are operating with the aim of managing IT services, whilst simultaneously striving to support business growth. In light of the survey results, Piers Linney, Co-CEO of UK-based Cloud Services Provider Outsourcery calls on CIOs to use their resources to enhance all areas of the business, moving away from simply a ‘keep the lights on’ approach.
Deloitte’s findings underline the point that the size of IT budgets are preventing CIOs from investing in new technology due to substantial funds being used to support essential IT services – only 22 per cent of IT budgets is being used for new technology. Though the lack of budget has been identified as a restriction, the report recognises two different trends amongst CIOs. Some have identified the benefit of investing in innovative IT alongside core services but struggling to gain the support from senior management within their organisations, while others are simply focusing on ‘keeping the lights on’ and not paying attention to the potential of IT to raise profit margins, value-add and maximise business growth.
Outsourcery’s Linney explains why business growth and IT need to be seen as elements that go hand-in-hand: “The way in which CIOs manage IT has a vital impact on the direction that companies move in, more so today than ever before. The solution to greater business success will involve leveraging services through a sustained IT programme that will enable CIOs to reduce the budget that they use to support day-to-day IT requirements and then use these savings to provide the fuel for investment in new technology – technology that will actually add commercial value to that core business.
Linney continues: “Conforming to this programme will be achievable through making strategic investments in a cloud IT infrastructure, while monitoring the ROI to effectively calculate cost savings. With time, the legacy budget will be significantly reduced as the scalability in the innovative infrastructure and IT services will provide an improvement in service value, with savings being used in other areas of the business.
“To ensure that this is achieved, CIOs must take the opportunity to regularly communicate with top-level management in order to identify what needs to be improved in the business and gain a greater perspective of the requirements of the IT system to support the wider demands of the company. As consumer trends such as BYOD and flexible working continue influencing the way people want to work, CIOs must become more aware of how a business’s workforce model needs to bend to cope with these unprecedented changes.
“In summary, big changes are happening in technology, and it’s in the hands of CIOs to be alert through investing in solutions that will enable their business to achieve growth. The Deloitte survey results highlight the need for CIOs to be mindful of their value in supporting the GDP, particularly after the economic downturn, because how productively and effectively businesses operate ultimately impacts on the whole economy,” Linney concludes.