The 7 most popular IT pilot projects today

The coronavirus pandemic has IT leaders shaking up IT priorities, with innovation pilots shifting to areas and technologies best suited to set up their organizations for near-term success.

The 7 most popular IT pilot projects today
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Tech spending is trending downward, with multiple studies showing IT is once again being asked to do more with less.

A July report issued by research firm Gartner said worldwide IT spending in 2020 will drop 7.9 percent from last year’s figure. IDC in May predicted a 5.1 percent decline in worldwide IT spending. And a survey of 100 IT leaders from Apptio found that 80 percent feel pressure to cut IT spend, while 50 percent have already cut budgets.

CIOs are clearly tightening budgets as the pandemic and its economic fallout have forced cost-cutting measures across many organizations. Yet these same events are also driving the need for new tech-enabled services. The Apptio survey, for example, found that 63 percent of the IT leaders report an increase in demand for IT capabilities. As such, CIOs continue to move forward with innovation-aimed projects — albeit more selectively.

IDG’s CIO Tech Poll: Tech Priorities 2020 research found CIOs launching pilots across a swath of IT capabilities, with artificial intelligence/machine learning, customer experience, employee experience, business intelligence/analytics, business process management/workflow automation, cybersecurity and mobile enterprise apps being the capabilities most frequently listed.

Although the IDG poll predated the pandemic, CIOs and executive advisors say IT continues to pursue pilots in those areas, but the pilots getting the greenlight now must show they have a short time to value, lower budgets to complete, and/or have a high return on investment, says Gartner analyst and chief forecaster John-David Lovelock.

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