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After three years of deep cost cutting across many IT budgets, priorities are changing at many companies. Cost cutting has now dropped significantly from it’s spot as the highest ranking priority, although cost is still high on the mind of IT. Business process efficiency is now the highest ranking priority — nearly half (49 percent) of InformationWeek 500 companies said this in a recent survey. Other priorities ranking higher than cost cutting include making business intelligence available to more employees (40 percent), improving customer experience (31 percent), and better engaging customers (30 percent). Cost cutting has dropped to sixth among business priorities (29 percent).
Changes in business priorities has translated into new strategies and initiatives that IT is undertaking. This year, instead of cost cutting, 68 percent of the IW500 companies say that they’ll be spending more on IT. Deployment of mobile applications is one way that businesses are trying to improve customer experience and better engage customers. 37 percent of companies have created mobile applications to interact with their customers, and another third have customer-facing mobile applications currently under development. 25 percent of companies have created mobile applications that can be used by their own employees.
Like mobile, businesses are also adopting social media in a big way. 75 percent of businesses have adopted social media tools to collaborate with customers and suppliers. Businesses are taking social media one step farther by beginning to experiment with the analysis of the social data which they collect. 29 percent of companies have applied sentiment analysis to their social data and another 39 percent are developing sentiment analytics tools.
Similarly, businesses are increasing their shift towards cloud computing. 85 percent are using SaaS and 27 percent have adopted cloud platform-as-a-service (PasS).
InformationWeek published an infographic which summarizes the results of their 2012 IW500 survey.