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February 05, 2010

CIOs Shifting to 'Lighter Weight' Services, Virtualization: Report

By Erin Harrison, Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

Business priorities are shifting from a focus on greater cost-based efficiencies, to achieving better results based on enterprise and IT productivity, according to a new Gartner (News - Alert) survey of chief information officers.
These productivity gains will come solutions that take advantage of the new “lighter-weight” services-based and social media technologies, including virtualization, cloud computing and Web 2.0 social computing. This transition can be seen in the top 10 technology priorities for CIOs in 2010 where business intelligence, the No. 1 technology the past five years, dropped to the No. 5 priority.
The top five technology priorities are: virtualization; cloud computing; Web 2.0; networking, voice and data communications; and business intelligence. These align with the top “business priorities,” which include reducing enterprise costs, improving enterprise workforce effectiveness and attracting and retaining new customers.

“These technologies, implemented properly, create the opportunity for IT to change its role and the operational performance of the enterprise,” said Mark McDonald, group vice president and head of research for Gartner Executive Programs. “Asymmetric technologies like virtualization, cloud and Web 2.0 enable companies to get out from under a front-loaded heavy investment model that limits IT’s agility and flexibility.”
The technologies that CIOs are prioritizing in 2010 can be implemented quickly and without significant upfront expense, according to Gartner officials.
In a recent TMCnet interview, Todd Benjamin, director of enterprise hosting at Hostway (News - Alert), discussed the  most significant trends Hostway is seeing among its customers at the dawn of the second decade of the twenty-first century,  and where he see the industry headed in the next 12 months.
“We see increasing options for value added managed services, which increase the quality of the outsourcing experience, as well as advances in virtualization and cloud offerings that provide more control and visibility to the corporate IT department,” Benjamin said. “Computing, storage and networking power continue to drop in price on a per unit basis, driving more ‘bang for the buck’ for users of all shapes and sizes.”

Erin Harrison is a senior editor with TMCnet, primarily covering telecom expense management, politics and technology and Web 2.0. She serves as senior editor for TMC's print publications, including "Internet Telephony (News - Alert)", "Customer Interaction Solutions", "Unified Communications" and "NGN" magazines. Erin also oversees production of TMCnet's weekly iPhone e-Newsletter. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Harrison

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