EMEA IT managers plan to invest in lean IT drivers

25 Aug 2009

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Over the next 12 months a large majority of organisations intend to invest in the drivers for Lean IT, including service management (88pc) and IT security (79pc), a survey of close to 600 senior IT managers indicates.

The CA survey found that in the current challenging economic climate, the greatest challenges facing EMEA organisations are the requirements to do ‘more with less’, improve service levels, and ensure close alignment between IT and business processes (all equally cited by 89pc of respondents).

The next most urgent challenges are to cut costs (83pc) and drive service orientation within IT (83pc).

EMEA organisations rate ensuring security as the most important factor in their business (90pc). ‘Identify critical business processes and their support by IT’ (89pc), together with efficient IT management (85pc) also rated very highly for their importance.

Around 58pc of organisations are likely to fund additional software purchases from operational expenditure budgets, while 43pc are likely to fund them from capital expenditure budgets.

And 73pc of respondents are likely to make additional software purchases to boost efficiency from existing operational expenditure budgets.

The core philosophy of lean thinking can be summarised in four words: maximise value, minimise cost. Lean IT focuses on analysing and optimising ‘value streams’ (the sequence of activities to design, produce and deliver a good or service) by removing non-value added activity.

The findings help explain why organisations are turning to Lean IT as a means of delivering the most value to their customers.

Budgets have been cut, but service delivery expectations remain high; business priorities are shifting faster than ever before; and customer service cannot be compromised. By applying ‘lean’ thinking to IT the IT organisation can identify opportunities to reduce cost, increase efficiencies and improve the customer experience.

"The research provides indisputable evidence that organisations are adopting a Lean IT strategy not only to get them through the current economic difficulties, but also as a catalyst for growth when the upturn arrives," says Kirsten Cox, senior principa,l Product Marketing, CA.

"These organisations are employing integrated methods, technologies, and advanced levels of automation to rapidly identify the causes of waste and eliminate them. Those that are successful will not only drive down costs, but also be better positioned to lead business and economic improvement."

The majority (57pc) are likely to fund such additional software purchases from operational expenditure budgets; the remainder are likely to fund them from capital expenditure budgets. And 73pc of respondents are likely to make additional software purchases to boost efficiency from existing operational expenditure budgets.

The survey, Preparing for the Upturn with Lean IT, reveals that the greatest challenges facing EMEA organisations in today’s difficult economic climate are the requirements to do more with less, improve service levels, and ensure close alignment between IT and business processes (each cited by 89pc of respondents). Other challenges include the desire to cut costs (83pc) and drive service orientation within IT (83pc).

When asked to rate the importance of certain criteria to their business, the respondents cited ‘ensure security’ as the most important factor in their business (90pc).

Other important criteria are to identify critical business processes and their support by IT (89pc) and efficient IT management (85pc). When thinking lean, organisations can’t ignore security.

The economic climate has resulted in many disruptive human resources-related changes; companies are downsizing, reorganising, conducting M&A activity, and bringing in more contractors.

This results in a dire need for identity provisioning and de-provisioning of user access to sensitive information ― both during the recession and in preparation for the economic upturn.

By John Kennedy

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com