Field Operations Financial Survival Guide for Today's Economy

Posted by Avigail Shabtai

Tue, Nov 20, 2012

Field Operations Financial Survival Guide for Today's EconomyThe lingering global recession has, unsurprisingly, had a very real effect on global IT spending. As companies around the world adjust themselves and their spending to new post-recession realities, one of several questions that remain for IT professionals is “what next”?

A tightening of belts, as innovation marches on.

According to global auditing and consulting firm KPMG, global business spending, in general, has come nowhere near the spending projected for this year. IT departments worldwide are expected to spend $2.7 trillion by the end of 2012. While this amount represents a 3.9 percent rise from the previous year, it still falls short of earlier predictions. This suggests that the recession in many parts of the world has affected enterprise technology budgets. Many companies have taken to creative ways to curtail their spending, including forgoing annual personal computing updates, and curtailing software expenditures.

This decrease in spending has not adversely affected the research and development of new software solutions, however. The continually increasing availability of multiple software development platforms has positively affected the rate of innovation in all sectors. However, many developed economies are in the throes of an economic crisis, and are not in a position to upgrade to the latest and greatest solutions.

CIOs must exercise foresight to make tough decisions.

This tension that has developed in many parts of the world has forced CIOs into a position to make some tough decisions. As the development of new technology marches on, but budgets stagnate, the decisions made about networks and software are more critical than ever. How can an effective enterprise stay relevant and solvent as budgets and development appear to be moving in opposite direction?

According to KPMG's data, it appears that business analytics, cloud computing and enterprise mobility will be the three major trends that will keep IT spending in the developed economies afloat in the coming months. Many organizations are now attempting to implement creative solutions that represent a fusion of marketing and IT to help make spending more efficient. In particular, the aggressive use of social media and web 2.0 properties to develop a more creative approach to customer relationship management represents a significant re-purposing of existing technology that is seemingly infinitely scalable, and extremely cost-effective. As social media tools and consumer technology increase in presence and power, marketing professionals will become increasingly important in the mission of forward thinking companies.

BYOD can be both a solution and a problem.

Bring-your-own-device enterprise networks represent the rare innovation that can be both a solution and a problem. On one hand, BYOD represents a significant savings on hardware costs for most businesses. However, the needed back-end network administration changes, when coupled with new policies to encourage effective uniformity, can cause organizations to lose time and capability in the field. In order to combat this loss, organization leadership should focus on developing a consistent and relatively future-proof networking policy.

The global recession has made it more important than ever for IT business leadership to be strong, forward thinking, and innovative to stay ahead of the curve.


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