Now might be a good time for CIO Magazine to stop bugging chief information officers and IT managers about their IT spending plans. Its surveys are killing us. Back in March, when the magazine did a survey of IT shops just as the global economy started looking a little ill, only 17 per cent of the CIOs polled said they expected …
Bah, who needs an IT department these days?
Plenty of easy cloudiness available, and John from accountings knows enough about them computers to debug the PAs' desktops.
cut or be cut?
While the magazine says that CIOs will cut their budgets next year, I think this is really just bravado. What happens in the real world is not that the CIOs cut the budgets themselves, but that the finance people do it for them.
Since CFOs unanimously think of IT as a cost centre, it's an easy target to axe all these wizzy new projects that they don't understand - and will probably not work, exceed their costs and run late anyway. Part of our problem has always been that the bean-counters simply don't understand the role of IT. It's frequently seen as a "necessary evil" and therefore marginalised. What we (all) need to do during the next upturn is to let the guardians of the monkey know how IT helps them.
Make the new motto "hug a bean counter" You never know, if you hug them hard enough, they might just stop breathing.
Lies, damn lies and statistics
These CIO surveys are great. They tell you what people are planning to do. The major problem is that they don't tell you why.
Of course non-urgent projects are going to get stalled if the company itself is in the poo. And right now that's a lot of companies.
Anyone reading these surveys and thinking 'Golly, Example Corporation is cutting its budgets so we had better' is an idiot.
Re:not work, exceed costs and run late
Hey ! Not everybody works for Her Majesty's government I'll have you know !! ;-)
But I love the motto. I'm go to go crush, uh, hug a bean counter right now ! I'm sure I'll find that I should have done that ages ago.
Well, there's always the hope that the costs that they decide to cut are the doomed projects, the non-functional systems that could be replaced at 1/100th the cost, or the managers who don't actually manage anything beyond getting in the way.
Yeah, fat chance. They'll blow the budget on some pile of execremental bloatware like Lotus Notes, Clearcase or Remedy in the name of process and saving money (I'm not bitter, I just quit my last place when they suggested migrating from Subversion to Clearcase).
Seriously, these CIO surveys are costing businesses a fortune, and need to be replaced with CIO types actually going and talking to their users and tecchies, rather than filling in quizzes. Those that survive the LART and the halon system should then leave with a bit more respect.
CIOs ask for their budget
any department can get their budget slashed including the bean counters. It depends who is at the top of the company, more often than not.
Everyone knows the trick of those who do the reporting lying to people further up the chain by now, that was so 1990s, now if you are at the top you choose who are your favourites and who you want to punish, and cut budgets accordingly.
CFOs don't have much power any more, most are in disgrace for borrowing too much, and they are often used as the reason why suppliers are not being paid, so they are hated all over their own industry.
They don't employ...
Robert Peston on a freelance basis by any chance!
These CIO/CEO types make me go GRRRR!!!!!!
They keep hiring stay at home moms into the IT world and I recently bumped into many who were hired and did not know how to use a mouse!
CIOs vs CFOs
I remember the good old days when the CFO was the CIO, and just had to have an automated bean counter.
Bill Gates = nostalgia icon
Expert lag time
The central point is that all these analyses - economic, OECD, or recycled opinions - all assume much sameness until it becomes clear that things have changed. The current view seems to be deterioration till mid-2009 and then return to 2007 levels. This is most unlikely to be a steady-state view .
In IT terms, our experts extrapolating round the coffee machine recently found that any project worth postponing till next year won't get back on the agenda till 2013.
Excuse me posting anonymously, but I don't know which bank to put any consulting fees on offer.
We Will Be Back
Rest assured, dear readers, we will be back to survey again. As long as this financial crisis continues and CIOs have to make tough decisions and the sun also rises, we will provide context an analysis. Don't hang up on me!
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