Gartner: the CIO and Web 2.0

The beleaguered CIO is being proffered heavy weight advice by the analysts at Gartner. First they weighed in with a Gartner Presents CIO Resolutions for 2009 and now Gartner’s top pundit Mark McDonald has offered his advice to the CIO in an interview with the Wisconsin Technology Network saying that “CIOs may have only four months to show results”:

Now is the time for CIOs to pick one thing that they have to get done fast and get done well and put all of their resources against it.

What’s interesting is where he sees that worth being demonstrated. Budgets in IT he notes will be flat. Large scale type projects therefore, while they can generate revenue or create savings, are currently too costly a risk for the cash-strapped IT dept:

Investments in BI and CRM and ERP were viewed as investments, and fairly significant capital expenditures.

And what this means is that they won’t happen in the foreseeable and certainly not in the next couple of quarters. Asked what will be “left out in the cold” McDonald’s reply was:

Basically, anything new,- but Web 2.0 tools are not among them.

What we are seeing therefore McDonald argues is Web 2.0 achieving mainstream adoption despite the downturn. This will be both as an external marketing tool and as an internal collaboration tool. Neither he says should be put on the back-burner. Notably, it’s the internal collaborational aspect that is now generating the most heat:

Every company, regardless of who they are, is probably going to be looking at using Web 2.0 to improve internal collaboration, but I think there is a significant difference between companies that are effective and have a history of being effective, which is achieving their goals.

This I think is the rub of the interview – social media as collaboration technology is going to take off, not least because it’s relatively cheap to introduce and can quickly achieve demonstrable results. The key aspect I believe though, is whether the company can capitalise on the potential gains here in Europe. McDonald is focusing on the USA and it will be telling to see how the potential adoption takes place in the UK and in Europe. Now, McDonald says is the chance to sieze the opportunity in the USA, let’s hope our European CIOs achieve this too.

Other postings
The interview has had keen reactions most notably Fast Forward Gartner: Web 2.0 Tools Exempt from Economic Cutbacks and at The Content Economy Cutting costs by improving internal collaboration

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *