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Gartner Identifies Four Futures for IT and CIOs

Analysts Examine Key Technology Issues Affecting CIOs at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2012, 5-8 November in Barcelona, Spain

(PresseBox) (Barcelona, Spain, ) The changing shape of IT is causing CIOs to question the role of IT in the organisation and the part they will play in it, according to Gartner, Inc. As businesses confront global economic uncertainty, changing market dynamics and cultural discontinuities created by technological innovation, their different parts require different ways of interacting with IT.

"We are witnessing the emergence of a new generation of CIOs, one that aims not so much to 'run' IT as to ensure that the business achieves strategic value from the use of technology," said John Mahoney, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. "Although this isn't an entirely new development, the extent of the change is growing and a tipping point will be reached in the next five years."

Gartner analysts today discussed future scenarios of IT and their implications for CIOs at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2012, which is taking place in Barcelona through Thursday 8 November.

Gartner has identified four dominant futures for IT in the organisation. They are not mutually exclusive and may exist in combination:

§ IT as a Global Service Provider
In this scenario, the IT organisation is an expanded and integrated shared-service unit that runs like a business, delivering IT services and enterprise business processes. It is virtually or fully centralised, focuses on business areas and business value, adopts a marketing perspective, capitalises on its internal position and delivers competitive services.

§ IT as the Engine Room
In this scenario, IT capabilities are delivered rapidly at market-competitive prices. The IT organisation succeeds by monitoring technology and market developments, and building expertise in IT asset optimisation, sourcing and vendor management, and IT financial management. It delivers ongoing cost improvements, looks for new ways to deliver the same IT capabilities for less, and is highly responsive to changing business needs.

§ IT "is" the Business
In this scenario, information is the business's explicit product or at least is inseparable from its product. The business is structured around information flow (not process or function) and the IT organisation innovates within the value chain, rather than just enabling the supporting services found in every business.

§ Everyone's IT
In this scenario, business leaders and individual contributors use information and technology aggressively to break through traditional business perimeters and drive ambitious collaboration. The focus is on information, rather than technology. Highly mature businesses embrace this divergent model for its collaborative and innovative potential. While traditionalists may see anarchy in this type of approach, others see liberated creativity. For this reason, this model works in non-traditional situations such as dynamic businesses, startups and R&D/entrepreneurial/community ventures.

Gartner said that these new CIOs will play an important role in identifying the required future of the IT organisation, and that they must ensure senior IT stakeholders are involved from the outset, so that their support is guaranteed. These CIOs will then be able to identify how their role will change (see Figure 1) and start planning a personal road map.

Additional information about Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2012 in Barcelona, is available at www.gartner.com/eu/symposium. Video replays of keynotes and sessions are available on Gartner Events on Demand at www.gartnerondemand.com. Follow news, photos and video coming from Gartner Symposium/ITxpo on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/..., on Twitter at http://twitter.com/... using #GartnerSym, and on Flickr at http://www.flickr.com/...@N07/.

About Gartner Symposium/ITxpo
Gartner Symposium/ITxpo is the world's most important gathering of CIOs and senior IT executives. This event delivers independent and objective content with the authority and weight of the world's leading IT research and advisory organization, and provides access to the latest solutions from key technology providers. Gartner's annual Symposium/ITxpo events are key components of attendees' annual planning efforts. IT executives rely on Gartner Symposium/ITxpo to gain insight into how their organizations can use IT to address business challenges and improve operational efficiency.

Gartner UK Ltd

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT) is the world's leading information technology research and advisory company. Gartner delivers the technology-related insight necessary for its clients to make the right decisions, every day. From CIOs and senior IT leaders in corporations and government agencies, to business leaders in high-tech and telecom enterprises and professional services firms, to technology investors, Gartner is a valuable partner in 12,000 distinct organizations. Through the resources of Gartner Research, Gartner Executive Programs, Gartner Consulting and Gartner Events, Gartner works with every client to research, analyze and interpret the business of IT within the context of their individual role. Founded in 1979, Gartner is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, USA, and has 5,200 associates, including 1,280 research analysts and consultants, and clients in 85 countries. For more information, visit www.gartner.com.