To read the Swedish article in full, click here.
Clara Berlin-Walker and Sofia Nilsson, PA strategic IT experts, comments on the results of a global CIO survey.
The Harvey Nash CIO Survey 2013, which collected the responses of over 2,000 CIOs globally, found that Swedish companies are lagging behind other countries when it comes to successfully using their IT functions to support business growth. The article details how Swedish CIOs are still largely focused on cost reduction, with only 43% seeing revenue as a focus area, compared to the global average of 62%.
Swedish IT managers also have little faith in their own department’s ability to drive innovation – 54% compared to 71% globally – and support of ongoing digitisation activity is still relatively low in Swedish companies compared to the global average (31% versus 42%).
Clara explains: "It is clear that technology is developing quickly and creating new opportunities for companies but CIOs need to get better at collaborating, innovating and providing the flexibility that businesses need to evolve.”
The article covers a number of changes which need to take place to allow IT departments to support businesses:
• unite the business: strengthen cooperation between the marketing department and the business. Be sensitive to their requirements and adapt working practices to reduce lead times and increase flexibility
• prioritise the company's IT project portfolio: identify short term ‘cash cows’ and long-term business opportunities. It's better to get started with several parallel projects than waiting for one to end. Get into the mindset that not all projects will be profitable – it is the portfolio's total return that counts
• be innovative: adopt a holistic approach to the project portfolio and try investing in innovative projects with a long-term reach. Identify the areas that have the greatest potential to succeed and take advantage of established partners in the market for inspiration. Employees should also be encouraged to develop creative solutions and ideas
• start on a small scale but think big: begin with initiatives that are easy to sell and require limited resources, eg lab hours where internal resources can let their creativity flow.
Sofia expalins:"Companies risk seeing new organisations gain market share which do not embrace the opportunities that IT offers. An example of what IT can contribute in a traditional business is the Met Office, Britain's equivalent of SMHI, which launched a website for uploading weather observations. By using Google, cloud solutions and open source, PA helped the Met Office to launch a weather site with over 60 million updates from 150 countries each year – all at a zero investment cost.”
Clara Berlin-Walker and Sofia Nilsson are strategic experts at PA Consulting Group