Poll data reveals more IT leaders are ready to embrace innovation in the coming months.
IT leaders dutifully tightened belts, cut costs and did more with less for many years. And while IT organizations will probably continue to apply modest budgets to big business demand, the move is on to make innovation a top priority among pressing IT projects.
Recent research from CA Technologies shows trends such as cloud computing and the consumerization of IT are both driving the need to innovate as well as providing some crucial technology tools to enable innovation across IT organizations and the businesses they support. Yet innovation isn't entirely in the clear just yet. IT leaders acknowledge they will be making innovation a priority, but they also recognize the challenges that could stall efforts.
For instance, a CA Technologies online poll of 726 respondents shows that 50% will be increasing the percentage of their IT investment dedicated to innovation. Fourteen percent said they would need to decrease the investment put toward innovation, and 12% expected that number to remain flat. Another 24% said they didn't measure investment in this way (see figure 1).
The impetus is there. IT leaders realize now is the time to innovate, and with a few IT trends helping them along, IT organizations could become the centers of innovation today's businesses need. According to another CA Technologies online poll of 772 respondents, the "anything-as-a-service" trend is the primary driver for innovation today. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) offerings are potentially freeing up IT resources from some of the more workaday tasks and redirecting the focus toward innovation. Many of the service offerings also rely on cloud providers, which in some ways help IT reduce the complexity of adopting newer technologies and become more agile in providing services to the business.
Consumerization of IT represented the second biggest driver of innovation for those responding to the poll. Some 24% pointed to the trend that includes the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) reality that most IT organizations are dealing with today. The challenges of developing mobile applications, supporting myriad smartphones and embracing social media also represent opportunities to these respondents who tagged the tech area as an innovation catalyst. Other drivers for innovation include business analytics and collaboration and knowledge management, each garnering 17% of responses (see figure 2).
Still, all the incentive to innovate isn't without some challenges. IT leaders continue to deal with several factors that could hamper innovation and hinder efforts to create a more agile IT organization capable of responding quickly to business demand.
According to a CA Technologies online poll that garnered some 717 responses, 40% said the lack of budget represented the biggest impediment to innovation in their organization. About one-quarter (24%) pointed to a lack of staff resources as a problem, and 20% simply are too "consumed with keeping the lights on" to change their focus to more innovative endeavors. Somewhat promising is the 16% of respondents who said "no buy-in from the business" was the biggest impediment (see figure 3). The percentage of those struggling to get buy in from the business seems considerably less than those not struggling. That means the business for many might also get it; now is the time to innovate.
CA Technologies will continue to poll on the topic of innovation. To participate online, please visit here.