deloitte cio report

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Technology investments a strategic priority and Digital, Analytics and Big Data the key bets for 2015

Deloitte CIO Report

24 March 2015: Today professional services firm Deloitte released its annual Deloitte Australia CIO Survey that highlighted how organisations across the globe are setting their sights on stronger growth and technology investment as a strategic priority. Digital, analytics and big data are taking precedence as technology is changing the way businesses operate and companies are adapting their operating models to reflect the digital economy.

Deloitte’s global CIO Survey reveals a disparity between the excitement over, and proposed investment in, technology – and the role the CIO is playing in this transformation. Over 900 CIOs across 49 countries provided insight into the perceptions, priorities, opportunities and challenges of CIOs around the world.

Kurt Proctor-Parker, Deloitte Consulting partner commented that CIOs in Australia have had to recalibrate their IT spending models due to disruptive technologies affecting the way businesses operate in the new digital economy.

“Data analytics, the Cloud and social media are continuing to make a huge impact on the delivery of business outcomes and in Australia only 17% of IT Budgets have been assigned to supporting the delivery of core IT services,” said Mr Proctor-Parker. “Luckily 76% of Australian CIOs have stated that their top priority over the next 18 months is supporting new business needs and 54% said they would prioritise developing digital strategies.”

This year’s survey points to Australian CIOs being ahead of the global curve in terms of adopting and implementing technology.

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Key Australian CIO Technology adopter rates:

Public cloud 64%

Private Cloud 80%

Mobile Apps 82%

Social media 71%

“These results highlight the shift required in board members’ attitudes towards IT investment and the importance of new and digital technologies for business development, “said Mr Proctor-Parker. “Whilst more than half of Australian CIOs (58%) claim innovation is an important priority, they receive little funding for this within their IT function.”

Another key finding in the report was Australian CIOs’ lack of concern about security compared with their global peers. Global CIOs listed risk and security as top priorities over the next 18 months whilst this did not feature in the Australian report.

“Perhaps Australian companies feel safe from the high-profile security breaches or cyber-attacks that have taken place in Europe and North America over the last 12 months or else it is down to complacency,” said Mr Proctor-Parker. “82% of Australian CIOs said they had a high tolerance to risk due to the fact they are not always responsible for how much money they have in their budgets or where they can spend it.”

The report suggests CIOs are willing to take intelligent risks with IT investments (82% class themselves as risk tolerant, not risk averse), and their appetite for investment does not seem to be reflected in their current portfolios of projects.

“CIOs are still most often associated with maintaining core IT systems and ‘keeping the lights on’,” says Proctor-Parker. “However, a key question in this year’s survey is whether CIOs should take more responsibility for technology innovation to help their organisations grow. The challenge will be to convince company leadership they are capable of delivering these new technologies.”

The report highlighted gaps when looking at individual leadership relationships. 77% of CIOs rated their relationship with the CEO as ‘very important’, yet only 35% believe this relationship is currently ‘very good’. New generation business leadership roles such as chief digital and data officers are gaining prominence.

“It is also becoming essential for Australian CIOs to improve their relationships with key external stakeholder groups as Australian CIOs are rated lower than their global peers. This is a concern and highlights opportunities for our CIOs to build and nurture external relationships,” concluded Mr Proctor-Parker.

The report has highlighted that the next 12 months will be critical for CIOs as their relationship with the business, and in particular the CEO, takes center stage.

Overview of key findings:

  • IT budgets. 80% of IT budgets are the same or up from the previous year. Over half of budgets (55%) are allocated to business as usual activities, with the rest split between supporting business change (23%) and supporting business growth (22%). When asked where Australian CIOs would invest more money if they had it, the majority (29%) said analytics and big data. Mobile apps (12%) and public cloud (13%) were second and third.
  • Disruptive technologies. Australian CIOs are willing to throw more of their resources at disruptive technologies compared with their global counterparts. 47% of Australian survey respondents said they believe they were making investments in emerging technologies. The global figure was 43%.
  • Analytics strategy. Australian businesses have been relatively slow to adopt company-wide analytics strategies. This is now changing due to the rise in the amount of data collected. 61% of Australian CIOs now use analytics to support their business, compared with 74% of global CIOs.

About Deloitte CIO report

Deloitte’s second Global CIO Survey 2014 has extended our coverage to over 900 CIOs across 49 countries within the Americas, Europe, Asia and Oceania. Australian CIOs continue to be major contributors to the survey, providing some fascinating comparisons to global peers on investment, risk appetite, priorities, adoption and positioning within the corporate hierarchy. This report identifies the trends most likely to have an impact for CIOs in the coming year and beyond.

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