Execs Provide Insight Into Emerging Technology Developments, Management Concerns

Society for Information Management membership cites security technologies, business process management, business intelligence among top tech priorities

New York — September 14, 2004 — A new survey commissioned by the Society for Information Management (SIM) shows that CEOs, chief information officers and other top enterprise managers are increasingly emphasizing security technologies, business process management (BPM) and business intelligence. Aligning information technology (IT) and business strategies is the No. 1 business concern for these executives, according to the survey.

The survey, which included responses from nearly 300 senior IT leaders drawn from SIM's membership, showed that security technologies rank at the top when it comes to applications and technologies of importance. Following in importance were BPM, business intelligence (BI), Web services, customer portals and data synchronization.

Jerry Luftman Ph.D., professor and executive director, Graduate IS, Program Stevens Institute of Technology, who conducted the survey for SIM, commented, "This demonstrates how quickly the IT world has changed in the last year. Four of the top six categories — security technologies, BPM, customer portals, and data synchronization — were not even in the top 10 last year. CIOs and CEOs face more challenges than ever to leverage the rapid changes in information technology that can help them better align IT with the goals of the business."

Last year, BI was identified as the top development in applications and technology. This year, it stands at No. 3. According to Luftman, security technology took over the top spot in 2004 as a result of the increasing challenges posed by invasive developments such as spam, viruses, spyware, and adware that can compromise IT security throughout the enterprise.

IT and business alignment still tops the list of top 10 IT management concerns, according to the report. However, Luftman said that, significantly, the emergence of a focus on government regulation and IT governance is on the list of top IT management concerns for the first time due to the reporting requirements of the Sarbanes Oxley Act and the internal controls businesses are requiring across the enterprise. Government Regulation ranks sixth this year and IT governance ranks eighth.

Retaining IT professionals ranks second. Other important insights indicate that IT spending and IT headcount is on the rise.