Trendlines: New, Hot, Unexpected

In this issue: The impact a possible recession would have on VC funding; The battle between social networking sites; Security risks associated with remote workers; IT leaders continue to court Wall Street; and By The Numbers: New rules and benchmarks for virtualization management.

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IT Leaders Take Too Many Cues from Wall Street, Study Says

CIOs seeking applause from Wall Street continue to widen the rift with end users who feel they have better technology at home than at work, according to an Accenture study released last month. IT leaders remain too focused on tweaking existing systems rather than making the large changes that users desire, according to the study, which queried the senior-most IT executive at nearly 300 Fortune 1000 companies in North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific and South America.

"CEOs and CIOs must decide between offering technology-literate customers new products and services that are truly unique, versus receiving a short round of applause from investment fund managers for holding the line on spending," says Bob Suh, Accenture's chief technology strategist. The study concludes that "the chasm between Wall Street and Main Street is wide and deep, with little evidence that companies and organizations are working to close it."

    Some highlights:
  • IT teams spend 40 percent of their time on existing systems—up slightly from Accenture's last global IT study in 2005.
  • Just a fraction of respondents are looking seriously at collaboration tools such as wikis for knowledge workers. Thirty-five percent are "committing mobile applications to a major part of their business."
  • High-performing IT shops lead the way in legacy integration using service-oriented architecture. Composite apps built using SOA make up 38 percent of high performers' application portfolios; 45 percent of new application functionalities are based on use and reuse of existing services.
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