CIOs Forecast IT Investment Trends for Upcoming Year

Even in the face of mass layoffs and increasingly tight budgets, seven out of 10 CIOs expect their companies to invest in various IT initiatives in the upcoming year, shows a recent survey by Robert Half Technology, a provider of information technology professionals.

“The big thing is [to invest in] what can save money or make money, [so] things like virtualization, data-center efficiency, voice-over-IP (VoIP) and Web-related projects have not been put on hold,” explained Dave Willmer, executive director for Robert Half Technology.

Topping the list of IT investment areas most frequently cited by CIOs is information security (43 percent).

“Outsourcing tends to come up when budgets are a little lean,” Willmer said. “When you’re outsourcing and using outside vendors, the need for tight security IT-wise is there.”

In addition, the “biggest culprits” for security breaches tends to be internal employees, so it’s particularly important to ensure information security in the wake of layoffs, Willmer explained.

“With some industries, having a competitive advantage is important. Trade secrets or whatever your latest package or rollout or product [must be kept confidential], so security is at a high point right now for a lot of CIOs,” he said.

Twenty-eight percent of respondents also cited virtualization as a priority, followed by data-center efficiency (27 percent), VoIP (26 percent) and software as a service (26 percent).

Other areas of IT investment on the list were green IT, business intelligence, social networking, Web 2.0 and outsourcing.

Companies can least afford to…

Deanna Hartley


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