Emerging Technology Findings

Finding 1
Process Improvement Remains the Prime Payoff

Early and mainstream adopters are more likely than late adopters to get business value from
emerging technologies. And with more respondents claiming to be early or mainstream adopters
this year than last, the percentage of IT executives achieving significant payoffs has risen.
In fact, investments in recently emerged technologies such as Web services and VoIP often
exceed expectations. In general, emerging technologies are helping companies improve business
processes and productivity; since process improvement requires IT-business cooperation,
this suggests the two groups usually work well together. Fewer companies are using emerging
technologies for new products and services, but these firms usually
see payoffs. Reducing costs or increasing revenues by using emerging technologies is tougher to achieve.

Finding 2
Companies Show Strong Interest in Web Video

There’s been an uptick in interest in emerging technologies. Process improvement, greater productivity
and cost reduction are the main goals, but the “hot” emerging technologies don’t fall
neatly into those buckets. Yes, many of the leading items on our list of 48 emerging technologies,
including virtualization, service-oriented architecture, ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) and business
process management suites can streamline, integrate or improve processes and IT operations.
But there’s also interest in Internet and Web 2.0 technologies that could lead to new applications
and IT innovations. The most notable example is Web video, the technology considered most
likely to provide business value.

The high rate of implementation and experimentation indicates
if there’s a killer application on this list, it’s likely to be this one. But video isn’t getting all the
attention: CIOs are experimenting with more technologies than they were last year, judging by
the larger number of respondents who say they’re testing or piloting emerging technologies. In
particular, there’s been a jump in interest in ITIL, desktop Linux and predictive analysis, and a significant
increase in the number of companies that have deployed desktop virtualization, desktop
search, Ajax (the Web development tool) and wikis. One surprise: Our survey turned up relatively
little deployment, testing or piloting of emerging mobile technologies. Perhaps the strong interest
in the iPhone will show vendors and CIOs there’s a hunger for innovation here.

Finding 3
Culture Makes Emerging Tech Pay Off

It’s important to support experimentation, remove fear of failure and create processes to implement
promising new technologies quickly. This year’s Emerging Technologies Survey confirms
good practices identified in our 2006 and 2005 surveys. We also found that while it’s important
to involve business executives in emerging technologies, it doesn’t matter whether new ideas for
these technologies originate from inside or outside the IT organization; there is little impact on
the ultimate payoff to the company. So, while CIOs should encourage ideas from outside the IT
organization, including third parties, ultimately they should continue to turn to their own staffs.
In addition, CIOs should consider ways to put new consumer technologies, including games, to
business use. All in all, early adopters are more likely to follow these practices consistently, which
helps explain why they are more likely to see payoffs from emerging technologies.

Finding 4
Cast Your Net Wide to Find New Technologies

In-house testing facilities help companies select emerging technologies. Are CIOs looking hard
enough for new technologies? Only three sources are used by more than 50 percent of respondents
to help companies identify promising emerging technologies: publications, vendors and
associations. Companies that receive payoffs are more likely also to employ consultants and their
own staffs to search for new technologies. And most IT organizations have dedicated testing
facilities, which are helpful, but should not preclude employees outside IT who wish to experiment
with new technologies, too.

CIO Insight Staff
CIO Insight Staff
CIO Insight offers thought leadership and best practices in the IT security and management industry while providing expert recommendations on software solutions for IT leaders. It is the trusted resource for security professionals who need network monitoring technology and solutions to maintain regulatory compliance for their teams and organizations.

Get the Free Newsletter!

Subscribe to Daily Tech Insider for top news, trends, and analysis.

Latest Articles