I.T. Management: Are You the Roadblock?
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Chances are, someone in your company thinks the information-technology department isn't nimble enough.
One-third of business executives believe their I.T. departments have "significant difficulties" or "can't keep up at all" with the pace of change in the business, according to a survey released this month by the Business Performance Management Forum, a marketing group backed by IBM and other tech firms.
And while half give I.T. a passing gradesaying the department handles change "pretty well"they still say there are "some difficulties" (see table, below). The study, which polled 320 executives in various industries, was sponsored by webMethods, a vendor of application integration software.
How can a chief information officer correct the perception that I.T. is dragging its heels? Often, it helps to remind business managers that there's a process to prioritizing projects, says Jon Payne, CIO of Wild Oats Markets, a $1.1 billion organic grocery chain in Boulder, Colo.
"There's always more demand for the I.T. department than there are resources," he says. "It's a constant battle." Payne, who joined Wild Oats in January 2004, oversees a staff of 29 full-time staffers plus outsourcing partners.