SIM by the Numbers

Sharing knowledge played a major role at SIMposium 2010, at which theresults of SIM?s annual survey of CIOs, CTOs and senior IT executivesfrom 172 U.S. companies were announced. IT faired better than most otherindustries in 2010, according to Jerry Luftman, former SIM executivevice president and executive director of Graduate Information SystemsPrograms and distinguished professor of Information Systems at theStevens Institute of Technology. He has conducted this SIM research for10 years.

?IT spending was up a bit this year, and will be up again in 2011,?Luftman told Baseline. ?Spending still won?t be up to pre-recessionlevels, but it is trending up.? In the surveyed companies, 65 percentsaid their 2010 IT budgets were either equal to or higher than 2009?s.Seventy-three percent predicted that their 2011 budgets would be thesame as or higher than 2010?s.

Staff issues were also somewhat improved. ?In our research, retention isvery positive, and hiring and salaries didn?t take a big hit,? Luftmanreported. The average turnover rate in this year?s survey was 5.5percent, compared with 6.9 percent in 2009 and 8.4 percent in 2008. ITstaff salaries in 2010 were higher than 2009 salaries in 42 percent ofthe responding companies. Staff salaries in 2011 are expected to behigher in 61 percent of these firms.

In another positive note, IT training funds as a percent of the ITbudget increased this year: from an average of 3.19 in 2009 to 3.48percent in 2010. That?s projected to reach an average of 3.98 percent in2011. 

SIM also queried its members on this year?s IT management concerns. The top 10 are:

1. Business productivity and cost reduction

2. Business agility and speed to market

3. IT and business alignment

4. IT reliability and efficiency

5. Business process reengineering

6. IT strategic planning

7. Revenue-generating IT innovations

8. IT cost reduction

9. Security and privacy

10. Globalization

The top five applications and technology investments in 2010 (rankedfrom 1 to 5) are business intelligence, virtualization, ERP systems,continuity planning/disaster recovery and cloud computing.Virtualization and cloud computing are new additions to the top 5.

One particularly interesting survey statistic concerns the way CIOsspend their time. According to the respondents, 75 percent of their timeis spent on non-technical areas, primarily in managing relationshipswith staff, business colleagues and vendors, as well as strategy and HR.That number illustrates the evolving role of CIOs.

?Our survey results show that IT is being leveraged to improve qualityand productivity and to reduce costs, but achieving agility and speed tomarket have also become increasingly important,? Luftman said. ?Nowit?s up to IT to demonstrate results.?