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Tuning TECH to Business

By Allan E. Alter  |  Posted 2008-01-09 Print this article Print

Our exclusive research finds that alignment is the top priority for IT management in the coming year and the most challenging task well into the next decade.

Aligning IT to business needs will continue as one of the top—and most vexing—challenges for IT managers for the next five to 10 years, according to new research by Ziff Davis Enterprise.

Alignment is nothing new. It's a perennial list topper, since ensuring IT organizations do what businesses need to get done is the entire reason IT organizations exist, and it doesn't happen without a concerted effort. The survey of 346 IT executives and managers provides some telling insights into how enterprises' IT leadership is going about achieving their alignment goals.

Building management's leadership and project execution skill sets is among the top priorities for the coming year. This makes sense given that managerial, technical and intellectual challenges facing IT organizations are so complex that they can't be accomplished unless senior managers sharpen their knowledge, leadership and orchestration abilities for planning and executing IT projects.

Those skills are desperately needed, especially considering the technology and business agenda of IT managers in the coming year. Topping the list of technology priorities is creating and improving strategic applications. Ranking equally high: improving the IT infrastructure (expanding it at midmarket companies; standardizing and consolidating it at larger organizations), and improving the quality of information. Previous research by Ziff Davis Enterprise validates these trends, as many organizations report steady migration to service-oriented architectures (SOAs), adoption of virtualization, and a reduction in server and storage infrastructure footprints.

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