'

Gartner: Attention CIOs, here's what your boss is thinking about

CEOs are ready to investment in technology for innovation. The catch is that IT budgets aren't getting any bigger.

Market research firm Gartner has a new report out today highlighting what it describes as a marked shift in CEO priorities from 2009 to 2010.

Whereas the focus for technology strategy was on cost cuts and efficiency gains, CEOs are now intensely focused on how to use their IT for closer customer relationships. One hangover that remains from last year, though: CIOs will STILL need to find areas of savings in their IT operations BEFORE THEY can make those new investments.

So, what does Gartner think CEOs care about? Here are three big things that are on their mind that they'll be looking for technology to unleash or help address as the world drags itself out of recession.

  1. Rebuilding Trust: Consumers want more transparency about the companies making the products they are buying, so they'll be looking for more information about their finances, sustainability investments and corporate sustainability investments. Business intelligence technology will be key here.
  2. Risk Management: Simply put, there are more regulations being written by the minute especially those that govern environmental activities and financial transactions. Technology that keeps companies abreast of compliance and corporate governance will be critical.
  3. Planning for Innovation: While costs ARE an overriding issues, CEOs are looking to technology as the foundation for new services or products that they might be able to introduce three to five years into the future. That means, wherever possible, you need to get at least a portion of your technology team thinking about innovation and not just efficiency. So, if your whole IT department is in slash mode, you need to change that. Its time to think about virtualization and social networking as tools of innovation, not just cost savings.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com