Key Issue for It Executives 2011: Cautious Optimism in Uncertain Economic Times Essay

Key Issue for IT Executives 2011: Cautious Optimism in Uncertain Economic Times. Summary: Jerry Luftman and Tal Ben Zvi starts the paper with introduction of the current situation where the IT is still moving out of recession, organization are still posing new challenges and has cause shift in the IT priorities. The paper discus the top 10 management concerns, however the top four “traditional” concerns remain the same: IT business alignment, business process re-engineering, IT strategic planning and security and privacy concerns.

These concerns are business related returns, focus mainly on how to leverage IT to help improve business returns and reduce business expenses. The concerns been described as 1. IT and Business Alignment: Always ranked as top concerns, it’s more about leveraging the opportunities for enhancing the relationship among IT and business organization to attain success. Around 500 executives have devoted enormous resources and energy trying to align IT, but only one in five believes the effort has succeeded. 2.

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Business Agility and Speed to Market: Business Agility is important concern after the downturn in US economy, faster and focus responsive IT approach can deliver immediate value. 3. Business Process Re-engineering (BPR): BPR is most important solution to leverage IT ability to reduce expenses. Technology alone is not sufficient, strong collaboration with business is required. 4. Business Productivity and Cost Reduction: Effective productivity is always top priority for the business, study by AT Kearney suggest to reach right amount of IT spending, IT department needs to work together with business.

CIOs need support of CEO and staff to deliver effective solution. 5. IT Strategy Planning: This is important process, to succeed today IT strategy is as important as during the time of strong economy. A well planned strategy is required for effective work process. 6. IT Reliability and Efficiency: This refers to the accuracy, timeliness and reliability of the data and information delivered by IT. For good decision making a reliable IT service is required to support it. 7. Enterprise Architecture: New entry since 2011, ranked high as today the CIOs are under pressure from management it show the business relevance and the value of IT.

The new structure on virtualization and cloud computing is grabbing attention of CIOs and business leaders. 8. Security and Privacy: Organization need to protect the valuable information asset such as individual taxes, financial assets, medical records, job performances reviews, trade secrets and many more data. It is an important concern to protect these data. 9. Revenue generating IT innovations: Innovation is the key to success for the organization in the current situation, new approach is required.

If companies fail to innovate and embrace new technologies they might lose the market share. 10. IT Cost Reduction: Well there was a slack in the economy every organization tried to reduce their expenses and budgets, including IT. The paper further discusses the top applications and technologies used by management for year 2011. In the survey the organization has marked top five technologies which management involves. Business Intelligence: BI remains the top application, as it helps companies value their ability to analyze information to perform quick decision making.

Even though highly ranked it difficult to implement because of high quality data repositories integrated making it difficult to implement. Cloud Computing: A new on the list of key technologies since 2009, and will remain on top in near future. In survey by SIM on average with all the respondent companies, 6% of IT budgets were allotted to the internal cloud. We are yet to understand long term implication of Cloud Computing. Enterprise Recourse Planning (ERP): ERP provides vehicle for reducing business expenses, an important current management objective as companies leverage IT to reengineer business process.

Mobile and Wireless Applications: IT organizations are now being asked to support personal devices as replacement to office desktops, even laptops. Research conducted by Oxford Economics suggests 57% said mobile technologies would have greatest positive impact on business over next five year. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems: CRM system organizes, automate and synchronize business process related to sales, marketing and customer relationships to enhance quality and efficiency and decrease overall cost. CRM social market is forecast to reach over $1 billion in revenue by year end 2012.

There has been an increasing trend for IT budgeting and staff hiring. In 2011, 56% respondents reported rising in IT budgets also 66% reported that IT salaries increased. Contribution: Looking at the current economy organizations need to understand the current scenario of the market. This will give them a clear picture and gauge their investment and what to expect in future. Society for Information Management (SIM) survey helps IT leaders around the world to know the important issues and current trend of the market.

Though the top five management issues still the same there are few changes in the market scene and new concerns surfaced this year. CIOs and CEOs have to work together along with their staff to tackle these concerns. The paper shows the general trend of the concerns in IT and gives management an opportunity to improve business productivity. IT has proven to be resilient even with the challenging economic conditions, the cautious improvement in IT spending with steady improvement.

There has been increasing attention on infrastructure spending and organization could invest are trending upward. In previous downturns, business executives asked IT organization to cut their budgets, today with the slow growing economy, organization are rethinking the role of IT. Integrate course concept: IT system strategy can be an asset to any organization if used well. Organization to understand IT importance, as discussed in lecture second IT infrastructure provides the foundation for the delivery of a firm’s product and services.

Enterprise Architecture has been ranked as 7th in 2011 top management concerns; it will surely be more important trend in future. Information repository is another important part of IT asset, and is 8th ranked concern of management too. These data when able to data mined can provide information top management would require for clear analysis. All said there is always a risk involved when implementing IT. The paper gives the general trend of IT in current situation, but if implement it poorly and using a bad timing can cause company a major loss.

Managers and CEOs should work in collaboration to achieve the targets. Critique/analysis: The paper talks about the shift in the ranking of the IT Management concerns, but never describes the cause of the shift. Also I believe Enterprise architecture being ranked as 7th is more important concerns for the IT Management. The effective architecture design will cause a major change in the expenses of the organization. CIOs working on virtualization and Cloud computing is one of big example of this becoming as top 5 IT Management concerns. Lesson Learned:

As an IT Manager, reading Jerry Luftman and Tal Ben Zvi paper will definitely give me confidence even with the current economical condition. The trend is upward and organization top management should understand the importance of IT. IT infrastructure once set can implement technologies to boost the revenue. The paper with different IT executive concerns gives a good understand of the market current trend and will definitely help the managers to gauge the situation and take the further actions. IT is important to any organization but management should be clear with their business strategies.