The Real Agenda of America's CIOs

By Baselinemag  |  Posted 2005-05-23 Print this article Print

CIOs are worried about lots of things. Global upheavals, leadership issues, corporate policy, federal regulation. But what's on their real agenda? What keeps them up at night and prompts them to give policy a pass to focus on things that make the business

CIOs say all kinds of things in surveys about what their favorite technology will be for the coming year. But where are they actually spending their money?

On some pretty mundane things, it turns out, but for pretty innovative reasons. Hot technology is great, respondents said, but not as great as using what you already have to best advantage.

That is probably why application integration, not leadership or alignment or even compliance, turned out to be the most critical IT project cited by the 1,270 Baseline readers who responded to our survey.

They said lots of other things, too, about how to handle the other executives at the C-level, how to make sure your technology advances the business instead of following it, and how to measure and prove your own effectiveness.

We took the clearest examples as case studies, profiled the most interesting individuals, and examined in detail each of the five project types readers cited as their biggest-ticket deployments for this year.

Want to know what CIOs' real agendas are for 2005? Read on.

Lead Story:
Top 5 Projects in 2005 Baseline's readers say they are getting to the future by building on the past; but it's not easy.

  • Behind the Numbers Want to know what's important to CIOs? Find out what they spend the most money on.
  • Technical Politics The most important (and perpetual) project is getting support from the business.
  • Successful Projects Never End Last year's big projects yield dividends, and requests to make them even bigger.

    The Numbers:
    Who's spending what, where?

  • Chart: Top 20 Projects and what CIOs are planning to spend on each.
  • Spending Priorities What system is "most critical"? How do big and small IT budgets differ?
  • Who Decides where to spend the money?
  • Who Manages the projects when they're approved?
  • Who Did We Survey? A pretty good cross-section of Baseline readers; maybe you.

    The People:
    Being Top Tech is a tough job; here's how they do it

  • CEO vs. CIO? Not quite; but two different perceptions add up to a clear technology vision.
  • Find the Right Tool for the Right Job There are only a few reusable technologies, and only a few real business needs. The trick is putting the two together.
  • Treat Execs as Co-workers If you put all your VPs in one office, would the result be Utopia or Lord of the Flies?

    The Companies:
    Save money; find new revenue. Easy to say, very hard to do.

  • Knowing Your Faults Is the First Step Sophisticated analysis shows the maker of Gore-Tex where to find the flaws in its own business.
  • Choice Hotels Finds a New Market selling supplies to more than just its franchisees.

    The Projects:
    Top technologies for 2005, and what to do with them.

  • Application Integration Get the most out of what you've already got.
  • Business Analytics Closing the books isn't enough; how about anticipating change in demand, dynamic pricing and more detailed business metrics?
  • Enterprise Portals Can you make a Web site more sophisticated, more useful, more standardized and cheaper?
  • Customer Relationship Management Snappy call-center service is ho-hum; now you have to anticipate the next thing a customer will buy.
  • Intrusion Detection We could tell you what this is about; but then we'd have to kill you.

  • Sound Off
    We want to hear from you. What projects are sucking up the biggest part of your budget? Which are the most critical? Which do you wish you could live without? Let us know.


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