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Posts Tagged ‘information technology’

Study Reveals Government Agencies Perpetually Behind in Technology Adoption

In Uncategorized on March 8, 2010 at 7:18 pm

Leading government market research firm Market Connections, Inc., today announced a new survey that calls government agencies perpetually behind the curve in technology adoption compared to the private sector, and hampered in technology adoption as a result of old legislation.

The study, which explored perceptions and adoption of new and innovative technologies among federal government decision makers, revealed the perception of technology adoption in government agencies as “slow and difficult to keep going” like a vintage Model T.

The company conducted the survey in February on behalf of the Government Information Technology Council (GITEC). GITEC is a group of senior-level government executives organized to support the delivery of high-quality and cost-effective IT services to their customers. Market Connections released the findings at the GITEC annual summit, a forum for government leaders, industry and academia to share ideas, challenges and successes surrounding the implementation, management and use of Information Technology.

Lisa Dezzutti, president of Market Connections, said, “The findings show real progress in some emerging technology and application areas. But technology engines don’t seem to be revving to keep up with needs. When asked if innovations have found their way into daily applications, more federal  decision-makers compare their agencies to vintage cars rather than today’s hybrids.”

The majority of the 223 survey respondents serve in management, operations, or IT/MIS roles, with 39% of them employed in defense/military agencies and 61% employed in federal civilian or independent agencies.

Survey highlights indicate:

• Wireless/mobile solutions and cloud computing were cited most often as technologies that, while beneficial or promising, remain the most overlooked. In fact, nearly three-quarters of respondents were either unsure if their agency has a cloud deployment plan or very clear that it doesn’t have a plan.
• Forty-five percent (45%) of respondents said their agencies are perpetually behind the technology curve compared to the private sector, while another 39% say that old legislation negatively impacts their agencies’ adoption of new technologies.
• Budget limitations narrowly outpace security concerns as the top two challenges confronting the implementation of upcoming technology initiatives. In fact, 18% reported that general hardware and software updates were the most beneficial new or innovative technologies implemented in the last 12 months.
• Nearly three in ten respondents say their agencies are not actively engaging Gen Y in the workforce; however, more than a quarter are offering competitive salaries and benefits, providing flexible work environments and increased coaching and training, respectively.

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IT Spending Increases; Focus on Optimizing Processes for Fast ROI

In Uncategorized on February 25, 2010 at 12:35 am

A recent survey conducted by Altada Solution — a leading provider of software solutions for the retail industry — shows that IT budgets appear to be recovering after the initial downturn at the start of last year’s recession, with averages for all retailers at 1.3% of sales compared to 1% last year, while 26% of respondents expect their IT budget to increase; the same figure as last year. The company released findings from the 2nd annual Global Retail CIO Survey, jointly sponsored with IBM.

However, while last year’s survey showed that increase to relate to projects already underway, this year’s interviews revealed more aggressive plans to implement new systems. The survey of 109 retail CIOs and IT Directors in both the Americas and Europe was undertaken in Q4 2009 by retail industry research specialists Martec International.

This year’s Global Retail CIO Survey clearly shows that optimizing the product / place / promotion offer is becoming an increasingly critical element of retail IT spend. More than 50% of retailers will be upgrading, replacing or implementing new systems in areas such as Automated Replenishment (52%), Assortment Optimization (58%), Promotions Optimization (56%), Promotions Management (54%), with a further 46% looking to invest in Demand Forecasting. Master Data Management (MDM) has the highest planned implementation of all applications studied in the survey, both across the Enterprise (35%) and for Supplier Management (28%).

“The top line statistics from this year’s survey, and indeed last year’s, suggest that the retail sector has survived the recession remarkably effectively,” said Allan Davies, CMO, Aldata Solution. “The truth is, though, that while the downturn hasn’t halted retailers’ IT spend, it has certainly changed the way that money is spent. Gone are the days of end-to-end, rip and replace projects, and instead we’re seeing a big focus on process optimization. Retail CIOs are not afraid of investing in new projects, but they need to see a quick return on investment. And by quick, I’m talking about months, not years.”

Customer is King

Systems to attract and keep customers featured prominently in this year’s survey. Multi-channel CRM was ranked as the most important application by respondents, with 42% having yet to implement multi-channel CRM, but with plans to do so within the next three years. Similarly 38% of CIOs surveyed plan to implement Loyalty systems – with customer data linked to buying patterns and behavior – within the next three years. And finally, systems that support the safety of customers were considered the most important application by 47% of respondents.

Sustainability Not a Priority

For the first time, attitudes to sustainability were considered as part of the research. Respondents were asked to score the impact of sustainability on IT spend and strategy on a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being the highest). The average emerged as a lukewarm 5.1. Views appeared to be polarized, with 13% considering sustainability to have a negligible impact on IT strategy, while 6% considered it to have a major impact. In terms of which applications retailers feel are having the greatest impact on sustainability, applications for store operations came top of the list. For the future, more retailers believe that multi-channel retailing will have the biggest impact on sustainability.

Related Links: IBISWorld industry reports

Software Publishing Industry in the U.S.

IT Consulting in the U.S.

Growing Interest in Outsourced Services Amongst Higher Education Community

In Uncategorized on January 18, 2010 at 10:24 pm

 

A recent survey conducted by CDI IT Solutions reveals that higher education IT decision makers are becoming increasingly interested in outsourced services to help address key challenges and implement priority initiatives.

Results of the survey show that those making IT support decisions at higher education institutions are most challenged by efforts to effectively manage resources dedicated to the needs of their constituencies, while still maintaining focus on their organization’s strategic initiatives.  The survey shows they are finding challenges in:

•Disaster recovery (lack of adequate disaster preparedness)
•Quality assurance/testing (lack of standardization, lack of QA resulting in costly rework, lack of staff and time)
•Application development (have talent but lack IT process, standards and governance)
•Ability to stay on top of IT innovations and their impact on IT support models
•Security (threat of breaches)
•IT staff retention

As for immediate needs, the survey indicates that top IT initiatives for 2010 include:

•Disaster recovery and business continuity
•Content management and workflow
•Strengthening enterprise technology governance programs
•Expansion of service desk self-service
•Student computing & desktop virtualization
•Virtual computer labs

“As their CIO counterparts in the private sector learned in past business cycles, IT leaders at colleges and universities are beginning to recognize the value of outsourcing services to stretch tight budgets while maintaining quality service delivery to faculty, students and administration,” says Andy Cvitanov, President of CDI IT Solutions.

Half of the survey respondents indicated that they already outsource some IT services within their organization with the most common being those considered non-strategic in nature (student email, laptop distribution, printer support and project management, etc.).  Noting that most opportunities would be in the QA/Testing and application development areas, nearly all believe outsourcing would be good for their institution provided they can:

Successfully address outsourcing as cultural change with other internal decision makers
•Accept that an external service provider (ESP) can provide equal or better service than the institution itself and are willing to keep control by managing the ESP through Service Level Agreements

“Demand for services continues to grow as more innovative and non-traditional use of technology permeates into pedagogy, business systems and social computing models,” said one survey participant.  “Demand for services requires us to evaluate our core competencies and where does it make sense to outsource to experts.”

“The results of our survey clearly show that IT outsourcing is perceived as favorable within the higher education community and the participants agree interest will continue to grow over the next few years,” continues Cvitanov.  “Companies like CDI will prove to be an asset to those institutions as we provide them with high-value IT outsourcing solutions, ultimately allowing them to focus on their core organizational initiatives.”

About the Survey

CDI targeted IT decision makers (e.g. VP, AVP, CIO, Deputy CIO) of both public and private 4-year colleges and universities located throughout the United States.  The purpose of the survey was to further explore the current challenges facing today’s higher education IT decision makers, understand their opinions on outsourcing IT services to external service providers and identify their top IT initiatives for 2010.  CDI partnered with an independent third party to facilitate the survey.

Economic Recovery Spending Could Flow to Information Technology

In Uncategorized on September 22, 2009 at 7:15 pm

As the economy improves, chief financial officers (CFOs) will look to bolster their information technology (IT) systems, a new survey suggests. When asked where they are most likely to place their investment dollars when a recovery occurs, 40 percent of CFOs interviewed cited IT.

The survey was developed by Robert Half Management Resources, the world’s premier provider of senior-level accounting and finance professionals on a project and interim basis. It was conducted by an independent research firm and includes responses from 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with 20 or more employees.

CFOs were asked, “In which one of the following areas are you most likely to invest once the economy improves?”  Their responses:

New or upgraded IT systems ………………….. 40%
New products or service lines ……………….. .18%
New locations or real estate ………………… …14%
Mergers or acquisitions …………………………..6%
None, will not invest ………………………………19%
Other ……………………………………………………2%
Don’t know …………………………………………….1%
                                  
“As companies emerge from the recession and become more profitable, they will begin to focus on shoring up critical business applications and technology infrastructure,” said Paul McDonald, executive director of Robert Half Management Resources. “While finance executives may remain cautious about making bold new expenditures, they understand that updating their IT systems can help improve risk management, increase operational efficiency and ensure regulatory compliance.”

McDonald noted the survey showed that the largest companies (1,000 or more employees) are most likely to invest in new or upgraded IT systems (48 percent) because of the economies of scale that come from making systemwide improvements.

He added, “IT investments encompass not only hardware and software but also reflect the human resources necessary to manage these initiatives.”

Jobless Americans Turning to Career Resource Sites

In Uncategorized on June 30, 2009 at 9:46 pm

comScore, Inc. released a June 2009 overview of the career services & development category, which revealed that more than 65 million Americans visited the particular category in June, representing a 10-percent increase versus year ago, ranking it as one of the top-growing site categories. Seven of the top ten sites in the category achieved double-digit gains during that period.

CareerBuilder LLC led the category with 21.7 million unique visitors, followed by Yahoo! HotJobs with 17.9 million visitors (up 23 percent vs. year ago) and Monster.com with 14.5 million visitors (up 6 percent). The next three sites in the ranking have each achieved substantial growth in the past year, with Indeed growing 59 percent to 8 million visitors, Job.com Sites up 46 percent to 7.4 million visitors, and SnagAJob up 48 percent to 4.7 million visitors.

Top Career Resource Sites
June 2009 vs. June 2008
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Media Metrix
  Total Unique Visitors (000)
Jun-2008 Jun-2009 % Change
Total Internet : Total Audience 189,873 193,896 2
Career Services and Development 59,031 65,221 10
CareerBuilder LLC 22,033 21,704 -1
Yahoo! HotJobs 14,535 17,861 23
Monster 13,605 14,472 6
Indeed 5,046 8,046 59
Job.com Sites 5,049 7,378 46
SnagAJob 3,160 4,662 48
Simply Hired, Inc. 2,882 3,876 35
JOBSONLINE.NET 2,294 2,996 31
OPM 973 2,765 184
BRASSRING.COM 2,249 2,005 -11

 

Top 10 Occupations Searched* on Career Service & Development Sites
June 2009
Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Marketer
Occupation / Search Term Searchers
Customer Service 273,310
Warehouse 257,484
Sales 216,784
Receptionist 178,787
Medical Assistant 161,232
Clerical 149,728
Construction 144,554
Driver 132,947
Retail 127,751
Security 107,219

 

WorkTree.com, the nation’s largest paid-membership job search portal, recently announced their top job search trends for the month of May, compiling data on many trends such as typical careers searched, desired salaries, and level of education.

The results show that the top careers being searched are in the fields of:

   Information Technology
   Human Resources
   Accounting/Finance
   Engineering
   Manufacturing/Operations

Sales dropped out of the top five most searched list from the previous month. These five fields represent 43% of all career fields searched during the month of May.

WorkTree.com also notes a drop in the salary level sought by its members. More than half of members searched for jobs in the $40,000 to $80,000 range, as compared with the previous month, where 21% of all searches were in the $90,000 to $120,000 range. In May, that salary range represented only 10% of searches. Typical education levels also dropped slightly. Nearly 71% of all searchers hold bachelor’s or master’s degrees as compared with 76% the previous month.

“We continue to see large numbers of highly qualified individuals actively seeking employment,” Board of Managers Chairman Allan Martin said. “One particularly interesting statistic – the willingness of people to relocate for work – is on the rise. It is the first time in many months we have seen that the number of new members willing to relocate is actually greater than the number of people unwilling to relocate for a job.”

Marriott Ranked Top Place To Work For IT Professionals

In Uncategorized on June 16, 2009 at 8:04 pm

According to Computerworld, Marriott International Inc., is ranked as one of “The Best Places to Work in Information Technology”, for the seventh year in a row. The hotel-chain ranked 12th overall, and is the leader in the lodging industry.

According to Los Angeles based IBISWorld, a provider of comprehensive industry reports, at the end of 2007, Marriott Inc. had over 3,000 properties globally, across 68 countries and territories, with revenue of over $13,000 million. The chain is known  to operate and franchise its hotels under the brands: Marriott, Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Residence Inn, Courtyard, TownePlace Suites, Fairfield Inn, SpringHill Suites and Bulgari.

Computerworld highlighted Marriott’s long tenure and the peer-to-peer Values In Practice (VIP) Award program. Each month, a few outstanding IT workers are honored for exhibiting one of the company’s core operating values and are recognized with a congratulatory letter from the CIO and a crystal plaque.
The Best Places to Work in Information Technology (IT) list is an annual ranking of the top 100 work environments for technology professionals compiled by Computerworld, the “Voice of IT Management.” The lists are compiled based on a comprehensive questionnaire regarding company offerings in categories such as benefits, diversity, career development, training and retention. In addition, Computerworld conducts extensive surveys of IT workers, and their responses factor heavily in determining the rankings.
“Marriott’s success depends upon the extent to which our associates have the capacity, motivation, tools and information to achieve both personal and professional growth,” says Carl Wilson, executive vice president and chief information officer. “We are honored that Computerworld has recognized our efforts to provide Marriott associates with the opportunities they need to be successful.”
“To be among the Best Places to Work in IT, it’s not enough just to seek out and hire the most talented IT people, offer them competitive pay and provide great benefits,” said Scot Finnie, editor in chief of Computerworld. “The organizations that made this year’s Best Places to Work list sustain a dynamic work environment in which IT professionals keep their hands on the latest technologies and work on projects that are business critical. In the months and years ahead, IT is going to become a key accelerator of business growth.”