Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Global Report Reveals Security Concerns Hinder Adoption of Web 2.0 and Social Networking in Business

McAfee, Inc. revealed that business leaders worldwide see the value of Web 2.0 in supporting productivity and driving new revenue - but remain deeply concerned about security threats associated with deploying the technology. A survey of over 1,000 global business decision-makers in 17 countries found that half of businesses were concerned about the security of Web 2.0 applications such as social media, micro blogging, collaborative platforms, web mail, and content sharing tools. More than six out of ten organizations have already suffered losses averaging $2 million, for a collective loss of more than $1.1 billion in security related incidents last year. There was another 60 percent concerned about loss of reputation as a result of Web 2.0 misuse. Brazil, Spain and India led in adoption of Web 2.0 technology for business, while adoption was lowest in Canada, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom.

Key Report Findings:

-- Web 2.0 adoption rates vary across countries - Overall, Web 2.0 adoption rates are high, reaching 90 percent or above in Brazil, Spain and India. Adoption is lowest in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada.

-- New revenue streams are the highest driver of Web 2.0 adoption - Three out of four organizations reported that expanded use of Web 2.0 technologies create new revenue streams while 40 percent said the tools have boosted productivity and enhanced effective marketing strategies.

-- Security is the leading concern – Half of respondents named security as their primary concern for Web 2.0. There was also a third that identified fear of security issues as the main reason Web 2.0 applications are not used more widely in their business. Companies’ top four perceived threats from employee use of Web 2.0 are malicious software (35 percent), viruses (15 percent), overexposure of information (11 percent) and spyware (10 percent).

-- Reputation damage is the biggest business consequence – Sixty percent of companies reported that the most significant consequence from inappropriate Web 2.0 and social media usage is loss of reputation, brand, client or confidence. One third of respondents reported unplanned investments related to “work arounds” related to social media in the workplace. Fourteen percent of organizations reported litigation or legal threats caused by employees disclosing confidential or sensitive information, with more than 60 percent of those threats caused by social media disclosures.

-- Many businesses block Web 2.0 rather than put policies in place – Worldwide, 13 percent of organizations block all Web 2.0 activity while 81 percent restrict the use of at least one Web 2.0 tool because they are concerned about security. Yet almost one third of organizations reported that they do not have any social media policy in place. A quarter of organizations monitor how staff use social media and 66 percent have introduced social media policies, 71 percent of which use technology to enforce them.

More information on Web 2.0 and Social Networking can be found at

Monday, September 27, 2010

Survey Shows Cloud-Computing Services Represents 10 Percent of Spending on External IT Services in 2010

Cloud-computing services consumed from external service providers (ESPs) are estimated to be 10.2 percent of the spending on external IT services, according to a worldwide survey by Gartner, Inc. Forty-six percent of respondents with budget allocated to cloud computing indicated they planned to increase the use of cloud services from external providers. Gartner analysts said there is a shift toward the "utility" approach for noncore services, and increased investment in core functionality, often closely aligned with competitive differentiation.

More respondents expected an increase in spending for private cloud implementations that are for internal or restricted use of the enterprise (43 percent) than those that are for external and/or public use (32 percent).

On a regional basis, Asia/Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and North America spent between 40 and 50 percent of the cloud budget on cloud services from ESPs. Latin America was the exception, with a notably larger portion of budgets being spent on developing and implementing private and public cloud environments, reflecting the need to cater to the close business relationships and high-touch interactions that are characteristics of the Latin culture.

More information on cloud-computing can be found at

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

IDC Survey Shows Sales and Marketing Budgets Will Rise in 2010

The International Data Corporation (IDC) Executive Advisory Group forecasts that IT vendor marketing budgets will increase by 3.7% and vendor sales budgets (investment) will rise by 5.6% for the full year 2010.

Richard Vancil, vice president of IDC's Executive Advisory Group noted some key trends and offered guidance for the tech executives. "The recession has brought major changes to the level and shape of marketing investment. At the macro level, overall investment is likely to lag revenue growth this year and this is the first 'watch-out' for executives, as our research consistently shows that marketing leaders tend to keep budgets in-line with revenue growth. The second factor is the major shift in the shape of the marketing mix. Traditional media spending has declined by 43% this year, and the category of digital marketing has grown by 53%.

"These shifts were expected and our forecast accuracy from earlier this year was excellent. Now, the question for marketing and marketing-operations executives is: How do we adjust our execution and processes to adapt? IDC suggests two key steps. First, seek process improvement to address the complexity of multi-path marketing. Think about separate process paths for Waterfall versus Agile execution. Second, look for processes that will improve the capability for personalized marketing. It is counter-intuitive, but consolidation and centralization of marketing processes and IT will precede the ability to de-centralize and personalize. The top marketers are putting more intelligence and process in place at corporate to make this happen."

More information can be found at

Monday, September 20, 2010

Worldwide Enterprise Software Revenue to Surpass $232 Billion in 2010

Worldwide enterprise software revenue is on pace to surpass $232 billion in 2010, a 4.5 percent increase from 2009 revenue of $222.4 billion, according to the latest forecast from Gartner, Inc. The enterprise software market is projected for continued growth in 2011 with revenue forecast to reach $246.6 billion. Through 2014, the market is expected to reach $297 billion at a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6 percent.

Some regions will fare better than others with five-year CAGRs to 2014 varying from 2.7 percent in Western Europe to 11.5 percent in Asia/Pacific. Emerging regions, such as Asia/Pacific and Latin America, which were less affected by the latest economic downturn than the U.S. and Europe, are expected to invest heavily in enterprise software initiatives in the next few years as they continue to round out the IT infrastructures necessary to do business.

Enterprise software spending in North America is forecast to reach $110.8 billion in 2010, an 8.5 percent increase from 2009 revenue of $102.1 billion. The market will experience consistent growth through 2014, when spending in North America will surpass $143.6 billion.

Gartner analysts said enterprise software growth in North America is significantly front-loaded to the first half of the year, as evidenced by stronger vendor earnings in the first half of 2010.

The Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region will see a fall in enterprise software spending this year. Gartner estimates 2010 revenue at $64.5 billion, a 3.4 percent decline from 2009 revenue of $66.8 billion. In 2010, the majority of software market segments are predicted to see a slight decline in EMEA, although by 2014 the market is expected to reach $76.2 billion.

The slow rebound of the market in Western Europe -- which in 2010 and 2011 is set to post only a mild recovery -- is in striking contrast with Eastern Europe and the MEA region. Gartner analysts said Eastern Europe is proving to be a highly volatile region with a boom and bust tendency, which can bring huge gains to companies that invest during good years (e.g., 2007 and 2008) but great pain in years of recession (e.g., 2009).

Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) is expected to have the fastest growth in software revenue of all the regions in 2010. The market for enterprise software in Asia/Pacific is estimated to reach $22 billion in 2010, up 13 percent from 2009 revenue of $19.5 billion. Gartner believes that both enterprise application and infrastructure software will demonstrate a strong rebound in 2010, and this positive momentum is expected to continue through 2011.

More information on enterprise software can be found at

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Getting Collaboration Right Pays: Small Efforts Can Improve Bottom-Line Performance by 0.3 to 1.0% of Total Enterprise Costs

The Corporate Executive Board (CEB), a research and advisory services company, revealed new research and related economic modeling that indicates even small efforts to improve collaboration through technology can improve bottom-line performance by 0.3 to 1.0 percent of total enterprise costs. The research findings, part of CEB's Social Computing and Communications Adoption Curve, offer businesses a unique view into the value of Enterprise 2.0 technologies, including what's working based on actual deployments.

In addition to providing valuable insight into cost savings and ROI, the findings behind the Social Computing and Communications Adoption Curve also show that:

-- Reaching planned levels of user adoption of Enterprise 2.0 technologies takes five-to-eight quarters after initial deployment of a given technology.

-- Social content technologies, such as wikis, social networking, and prediction markets, are falling short of adoption targets in as many as two-thirds of organizations.

-- Location-aware technologies, enterprise search capabilities, and synchronous document creation technologies are seeing the most growth in companies, with each expected to increases in employee adoption and use by 10 percent or more over the next year.

-- Organizations are realizing the most immediate value from technologies that help employees communicate faster. Implementation of mobile technologies, room-based telepresence, unified communications, and synchronous project planning technologies have either met or exceeded adoption targets in a majority of organizations. 

More information on CRM and collaboration can be found at

Monday, September 13, 2010

Top 10 Forces to Impact Outsourcing and IT Services Industry

Gartner, Inc. has identified 10 major forces that are actively reshaping the future of IT services and the outsourcing market, listed below, (in no particular order):

Hyperdigitization is the accelerating manifestation of the impact of IT. Digitization describes the parts of the economy in which the "product" or "service" is content that is entirely, or almost entirely, digital. This proportion of the economy is growing significantly faster than the "physical" aspects of the economy and as such, this force describes an essential part of the global economy. The impact is pervasive, influencing personal and social lives -- but increasingly accelerates economic, commercial and political activity. It is estimated that by 2020, roughly one-quarter of the global gross domestic product (GDP) will be generated by the force of digital activity.

Globalization is the fundamental force changing IT service delivery and business's competitive activities in almost every vertical market -- and thus economies -- in some way, shape or form. Globalization alters the perspective of all aspects of businesses, from partners, to suppliers, to clients, to supply chains, to technology and labor. Every business must embrace the notion of being global. Similarly, an IT strategy must be global, which means taking advantage of IT to break down physical limitations, and, at the same time, tapping into a global labor pool that brings new energy and innovation at scale.

Consumerization refers not only to the acceleration of consumer-oriented technology and behaviors into people's lives, but also to the introduction and expansion of these consumer-oriented technologies into enterprise IT strategies. Consumer behaviors will have the power to reshape how enterprise IT works; they will bring new and varied expectations for IT, which, at an enterprise IT level, must be recognized and developed. Growing consumer-buying power and the use of IT (and information access to the buyer) will force vertical sectors to adopt new technologies and create new products that better match consumer needs.

The Cloud
Gartner defines cloud computing as "a style of computing where scalable and elastic IT-enabled capabilities are provided 'as a service' to external customers using Internet technologies." Because of the interaction of the commoditization and standardization of technologies, virtualization and the rise of service-oriented software architectures, and (most importantly) the dramatic growth in popularity/use of the Internet and the Web, a discontinuity has arisen that amounts to a new opportunity to shape the relationship between those who use IT services and those who sell them. The discontinuity implies that the ability to deliver specialized services in IT can now be paired with the ability to deliver those services in an industrialized and pervasive way. The reality of this implication is that users of IT-related services can focus on what the services provide them, rather than how the services are implemented or hosted.

Intelligence Technology
After decades of investments in IT, many organizations still feel that its ability to generate true business insight that can elevate that organization's capability to compete in its chosen market(s) is not as effective as it could and should be. Business intelligence, analytics, pattern recognition, and "smart" solutions are the new vocabulary of IT's value; new IT-related initiatives that don't fit within this framework will be increasingly less attractive to enterprises that are not interested in more "IT for IT's sake," but are laser-focused on "IT for the business' sake."

Security and Privacy
As activity migrates to the Internet and the cloud, and the hyperdigitization trend accelerates, the need to upgrade the security of the experience and the clarification of rights to privacy of the individual/corporate user increases in tandem. The breaches of security and privacy that occur have enormous ramifications -- financially and in terms of buyer confidence. Although some people argue that high profile incidents of identity theft and credit card hacks haven't stopped the growth of the Internet over the last 15 years, it is also hard to argue against the notion that more investment and more regulation is needed to ensure that the next wave of migration to the cloud has net/net positive outcomes.

More elements of IT can be regarded as a component (definition: a constituent part; element; ingredient) of a larger, or broader IT application or system. The notion of reusable "objects" is becoming more of a reality as the Internet creates a "platform" on which users can configure prebuilt IT components rather than constantly starting from scratch for each new IT project.

Hypercompetition essentially refers to a buyer's market in IT services, where a combination of factors coexist that drive widespread, cost-based decision making. Hypercompetition drives lowest-cost deals --but the real threat is the sustainability of those deals. The economic realities create a short-term buyers' market, but a long-term problem for buyers-- and providers.

Value Chain
Service value chains will redefine competition and how IT services are consumed and paid for. A new maxim for the future regarding service provisioning is that "the whole is greater than the sum of the parts." Organizations must become more proficient their ability to examine their providers' partners — and their value chains. In the cloud, the value chain is not one-dimensional; a network of providers will be evaluated for their specialization. Service value chains will emulate visionary practices from other industries.

Deep specialization into subvertical processes will be an imperative for commercial success in the new arena of alternative services delivery. Deep process knowledge and industry IP will be applied to subverticals. The formula for future success -- microverticalized solutions -- will indeed lead to market fragmentation. However, that fragmentation will spawn vendor-led innovation, increased choice to the buyer and differentiated value in prebuilt solutions.

More information on the IT Services industry can be found at

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Survey Reveals Product Innovations Don't Include Customer Ideas

Accept Corporation, a leader in product innovation management, announced survey results from two polls. The findings indicate a general inability of companies to translate customer ideas into product enhancements and innovation. This represents a significant lost opportunity for companies to develop and market products based on features that customers actually need and will pay for.

The first survey measured the ability within companies to translate customer ideas into strategically important products and features. The second survey measured the extent to which product ideas are collected from customers, partners and suppliers to determine how well the voice of the customer is being integrated within their products and features today.

Survey highlights:
-- 83 percent of respondents said fewer than 25% of customer ideas are translated into new products. This finding suggests that most companies today not only lack a consistent way to capture and prioritize strategically important ideas but are also unable to translate those ideas into requirements, resulting in better, more profitable products.

-- 41 percent of total respondents, and 45 percent of large organizations, said less than 50 percent of product ideas come from customers, partners and suppliers. This suggests that companies are still struggling when it comes to ensuring that their products and features are firmly based on the voice of the customer. Most product decisions today are made based on someone's favorite features, political arm-wrestling, or HIPPO (Highest Paid Person's Opinion).

More information can be found at