Gartner: CIOs to spend 40% of time running IT

Analyst firm finds IT budgets rising in the UK, but urges CIOs to forge links with the business

CIOs expect to spend less than 40 per cent of their time running their IT departments this year.

That is according to a survey of 200 UK chief information officers by analyst firm Gartner, which said respondents plan to spend more time liaising with other parts of the business.

Instead of managing IT, CIOs told Gartner they will spend around a quarter of their time working with other C-suite executives, and 18 per cent of their time with business unit leaders.

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Another 16 per cent of their time will be spent with customers, said Gartner in its report, 2015 CIO Agenda, after recommending last September that CIOs become more involved with the business.

The analyst house said: "CIOs are reacting to the digital opportunity and challenge by creating time and space for themselves personally.

"One approach they are using is to put a chief operating officer of IT (COO of IT) in place, who takes care of all aspects of running the IT organization day-to-day, including infrastructure, operations and development."

It found that globally around half of the 2,800 CIOs surveyed have done this, but urged them to do more to integrate themselves with the business.

"Having a COO of IT on its own is not enough CIOs then need to have the discipline to delegate, and the focus and style to influence, educate and learn with the C-suite, the board, and the external ecosystem," Gartner said.

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IT budgets

UK-based CIOs told Gartner they expect IT budgets to increase 1.4 per cent in 2015, after years of flat budgets.

However, Gartner found that CIOs had varying degrees of control over that budget depending on their industry, with media CIOs dropping to 29 per cent of budget responsibility globally, and risding to 61 per cent in healthcare.

On average, the CIO had 47 per cent of budget control.

Gartner added: "In geographies and industries where there are more chief digital officers, CIOs see themselves as having less of a digital leadership role."

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