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CIOs see potential for innovation, but lack delivery: survey

Only 2 per cent of CIOs said their organisations have fully delivered on innovative projects

There are only a few CIOs who are delivering on their innovation initiatives in their organisations, with the majority struggling to find the time and resources to make it happen, according to Harvey Nash’s 2013 global CIO survey.

Harvey Nash surveyed 2029 CIOs, including 210 Australian CIOs, from 10 countries and found that 99 per cent see technology innovation as a potential differentiator in their industry, with 71 per cent of those saying their organisations need to embrace new technology or lose market share.

However, only 2 per cent said their organisations have fully delivered on innovative projects, while 7 per cent had no innovation delivered at all. A quarter of CIOs have managed to deliver on most of their innovative projects, while the majority (65 per cent) are making some progress on innovation.

“The innovation gap between innovation potential and innovation achievement is widening,” Harvey Nash’s report reads.

“There is a realisation amongst the CIO community that more needs to be done to close the innovation gap. More than two-thirds (69 per cent) have identified that too little time and too few resources are currently being invested in innovation, and only 2 per cent feel they are investing too much in their innovation activity.”

With the lack in time and resources being the main barriers to delivering on innovation, 42 per cent of CIOs will increase their outsourcing investment over the year. In Australia, 51 per cent plan to increase outsourcing.

“One in 10 CIOs spend more than half of their IT budget on outsourced activity while 19 per cent of CIOs commit between a quarter and a half of their IT spend on outsourcing projects,” the report reads.

“Only 16 per cent of respondents expect their IT spend on outsourcing to decline next year, while 42 per cent plan to maintain outsourcing investment at current levels, and the same percentage (42 per cent) expect to increase their outsourcing investment.”

Mobility is the top technology to help drive innovation, with 70 per cent of CIOs who plan to increase investment in the area the next 12 months. In Australia, 73 per cent see mobility solutions providing competitive advantage in the coming year.

However, only 8 per cent have created new channels and methods of doing business through mobile. The rest (92 per cent) are not being as innovative - 53 per cent are mobilising some of their assets in a basic way and only 19 per cent have mobilised most of their assets but have not yet reached the point of making new business out of it.

Cloud is also a high investment priority, the survey found. Almost 60 per cent of CIOs surveyed will increase investments in cloud, with 62 per cent who are actively promoting it to help drive innovation.

Collaboration technologies were also promoted by 71 per cent of CIOs as a driver of innovation, with about 50 per cent who plan to increase investment in this.

CIOs are also not keen on investing in consumer IT and BYOD, with the disadvantages (44 per cent) outweighing the advantages (36 per cent). Fifty-three per cent also indicated that shadow IT was highly disadvantageous to to their organisations.

About 40 to 45 per cent of CIOs plan to increase investment in big data and social media, but they are not seen as "major disruptors" or drivers of innovation for most CIOs.

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