Anna Frazzetto's Blog

Digital Innovations and Technology Solutions

My Prediction: U.S. CIOs to Agree with UK CIOs

This fall, the Harvey Nash CIO Survey of UK-based CIOs revealed that today's IT leaders see outsourcing as much more than a cost-cutting strategy. As the UK writer and outsourcing industry expert Mark Kobayashi-Hillary points out in his blog, the long-held promise that outsourcing will become a strategic business model may finally be turning into a reality.

Kobayashi-Hillary cites that fact that three quarters of the 640 executives surveyed in the UK survey said that flexibility and responsiveness are the key benefits they are looking for when outsourcing. Rather than bare bones cost issues, IT leaders are looking at what outsourcing can do to improve overall business operations and competitiveness.

I am going to confidently predict that the U.S. CIO Survey, which Harvey Nash is conducting now, will come back with a similar result. My confidence comes from two recent presentations I gave at national IT events earlier this month. The first was at SIMposium, the annual national conference for the Society of Information Management, and the second presentation was for the IT Infrastructure Management Conference & Expo 2007. Both of my talks centered on outsourcing, with a heavy emphasis on offshore outsourcing. When the question and answer session began, people were not asking about cost issues. They were discussing how to build global business strategies that would make their organizations more nimble and better equipped to compete in a diverse, expansive marketplace.

I would agree with Kobayashi-Hillary and say that just a few years ago the vast majority of the outsourcing questions I received at similar events were related to the drive to meet budget reduction goals. But today, as businesses see skills and industries migrating to all areas of the globe, their leaders are realizing the value of a business strategy that best leverages the market's resources--from talent to infrastructure to innovation to efficiency.

Outsourcing has long been a critical tool in making IT departments cost effective. Now outsourcing is making IT departments more efficient, innovative, resourceful, capable and responsive. That's the kind of tool no IT department should be without and CIOs worldwide are realizing it.