Gartner Looks at the Big IT Issues for the Next Few Years
February 11, 2008 Timothy Prickett Morgan
The predictions for the IT market were a little light as 2007 came to a close, but the analysts at Gartner talked to 1,500 chief information officers and other top IT brass and as part of its promotion for its Gartner EXP executive program, where CIOs get to hobnob, the company released some of the results of the surveys. The 1,500 CIOs surveyed represented $132 billion in aggregate IT spending in 33 countries and across 23 different industries.
Right up front, 85 percent of the CIOs polled said that they expected “significant change” in their IT organizations over the next three years, which is saying quite a lot considering the tectonic shifts that have hit the data center in the past decade. And, as has been the case in the past couple of years, CIOs are not being given a lot of extra dough to get new things done and to keep old systems updated and running. Among the companies surveyed by Gartner as 2007 was ending, the aggregate IT budgets of these firms was expected to grow by an average of 3.3 percent, up a smidgen compared to 2007 but certainly not qualifying as a boom in IT spending.
And once again, the priorities of business managers and IT managers show a classic mismatch, and demonstrate how business and IT talk in different languages and have different goals as each year gets under way. Take a look at the top 10 business and IT priorities for 2008 according to the Garter survey:
“CIOs recognize the importance of IT in ‘making the difference’ by changing business processes, attracting customers and developing new products and services,” explained Mark McDonald, group vice president and head of research for Gartner EXP and one of the authors of a report based on the survey results, called Making the Difference: The 2008 CIO Agenda. “However, they are guarded in their confidence in IT’s ability to create results in these areas. Momentum has been building for IT to play a larger role. This year, those expectations are beginning to outpace CIO confidence to deliver. This sharpens CIOs’ concentration on IT capabilities like never before.”
Of course, being sharp is not as useful as being properly staffed with IT experts who can get IT jobs done. Only 27 percent of the CIOs polled by Gartner say they have the correct number of skilled IT personnel to take on the challenges they face in 2008.
In another Gartner report, the company’s prognosticators were in a mood to make some predictions–more than 100 in all made collectively by the analysts at the company. To try to stir up a little business, Gartner gave a little taste of those predictions, which span from 2008 through 2012. Here are the ones that affect real IT operations: