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Are CIOs Irrelevant to Enterprise 2.0?

Posted by Frank Gens on July 25th, 2007

podcast version of this post

For the past two years, innovation has remained the #2 CEO priority (right behind the perennial #1, customer care). And over the past several years, an important new avenue for rapid innovation and value-building has been emerging: community-based collaboration.

How are IT groups doing in helping business executives take advantage of the Web 2.0 model? Not very well.

A growing number of businesses are enlisting the help, via the Web, of large communities – of customers, prospects, employees and partners – to generate new product and service ideas, solicit feedback on existing offerings, gauge reactions to new marketing messages, etc. On the technology front, an explosion of “Web 2.0″ tools and services are emerging to support this strategic collaboration and communication, including blogs, wikis, really simple syndication (RSS), social networking, social bookmarking, mash-ups, and more.

In a survey earlier this year, we wanted to determine how corporate IT groups are doing in helping business executives take advantage of the Web 2.0 model (sometimes referred to as “Enterprise 2.0″ in a corporate setting). As you can see below, the answer is: not very well.




Of those respondents who had an answer to the question: What percentage of the Web 2.0 tools you use for business are managed by your corporate IT department?, 25% percent answered None (0%). Another 30% indicated that up to 39% were managed by corporate IT. For the entire sample of respondents, the weighted average for the percentage of Web 2.0 tools managed by corporate IT was only 32.8%. In other words, over 68% of the Web 2.0 tools used for business purposes in our sample are NOT being managed corporate IT. This percentage was not much different when we looked only at small or medium or large enterprises. Nor did the responses from business executives differ markedly from the IT executives we surveyed.

Think for a minute about how many important IT tools and services there are in the enterprise for which you could say “two-thirds are NOT managed by IT”. It’s a pretty short list. Given how high a priority CEOs are giving to improving innovation, and the growing importance of Web 2.0 tools and practices in enhancing enterprises’ ability to innovate, this survey finding doesn’t strike me as a very good thing. It suggests that CIOs and their organizations are seen as irrelevant by way too many organizations when it comes to this new ingredient in the innovation formula.

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6 Responses to “Are CIOs Irrelevant to Enterprise 2.0?”

1. While some misalignment between IT and business is inevitable, how do we narrow the gap constantly? Should the business manager be CIO?
2. This situation reminds me when applications based on midrange servers and PCs are deployed to bypass central IT department. Only this time no new application and hardware is deployed on company’s premises. However some of the issues are still there which the business users may not aware of, e.g. security, privacy, confidentiality, control of assets.

[...] read more | digg story [...]

[...] ……to Enterprise 2.0? [...]

Great post and ideas! I’m going to share this with the rest of my team as we work more with enterprise-level clients.
Thanks and Regards/-
Jason Webb

[...] в это же время исследование IDC говорит о том, что не только бизнес, но и сами [...]

[...] have their needs satisfied whether or not the irrelevant CIO likes it or not.  A 2007 IDC survey, Are CIOs Irrelevant to Enterprise 2.0, shows that for business use of Web 2.0 tools, nearly two-thirds of the tools used for business [...]

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