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2006 InformationWeek 500 Winners, Survey, And Conference

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Are You InformationWeek 500 Material?
2. Today's Top Story
    - How The InformationWeek 500 Cracks Businesses' Toughest Problems
    Related Stories
    - 2006 InformationWeek 500 Winner: Principal Financial Group
    - Video Interview: Principal Financial Group
    - 2006 InformationWeek 250 Listing By Rank
    - Complete 2006 InformationWeek 500 List Of Winners
    - Slide Show: 8 Fast Facts About The InformationWeek 500
3. Breaking News
    - HP Contacted By U.S. Attorney In Press Leak Probe
    - HP Board Agrees To Reconvene Late Monday
    - Dell Delays Filing Quarterly Report Because Of Probe
    - EU Widens Intel Probe
    - Three Years After Sobig.f, New Attack Modes
    - Review: Atlas Succeeds With Power Demands
    - 'Second Life' Databases Hacked, 650,000 Affected
    - Thieves Targeting Online Games Prompt Tighter Security
    - Video-Game Analytics Track Players' Behavior
    - Xanga To Pay $1 Million For Violating Children's Protection Act
    - Facebook Founder Apologizes In Privacy Flap; Users Given More Control
    - Intel Offloads Optical-Networking Components Business
4. Grab Bag
    - What Slows Windows Down? (Thepcspy.com)
    - Former Space Tourist Takes On Microsoft (CNN.com)
    - AOL To Stream NBC Series Premieres (BetaNews.com)
    - An Industry Is Based On A Simple Masquerade (New York Times)
5. In Depth: InformationWeek 500
    - InformationWeek 500 Home Page
    - Methodology: Selecting The InformationWeek 500
    - Leaders In Innovation
    - 20 Great Ideas From InformationWeek 500 Companies
    - Interactive Map: Think Globally, Search Locally
    - Vertical Industry Breakdown Of The InformationWeek 500
    - InformationWeek 500 Trendable Charts
6. Voice Of Authority
    - HP Must Rebuild The Damage To Its Image
7. White Papers
    - Evolving Beyond Traditional Asset Management
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"We will not tire, we will not falter, and we will not fail." -- George W. Bush (speech after 9/11 attacks)


1. Editor's Note: Are You InformationWeek 500 Material?

Innovation. It's not an off-the-shelf commodity. Every company that conducts business over the Web, consolidates its data centers, has survived a CRM or ERP implementation, regularly taps its data warehouse, or rolls out voice over IP isn't an innovator. That's plenty hard work, but such business technology initiatives are table stakes in this day and age.

At InformationWeek, we're particularly picky about applying the innovator moniker. Our tagline is Business Innovation Powered By Technology, but we know that CIOs and other high-level business technology decision makers have PR handlers just as the vendors do, so we're skeptical when we're told that yet another company has transformed itself or its industry with its deft IT touch. For the past 18 years, our InformationWeek 500 story package (and accompanying conference this year) has celebrated the nation's leading business tech innovators, but we settle on our company rankings only after the most rigorous quantitative and qualitative analysis.

We won't reveal the details of that evaluation process here—too many companies would reverse engineer our survey to up their ranking next year—but suffice it to say that we judge innovation differently from the mainstream media. Here are some of the myths and realities of what defines an InformationWeek 500 company.

  • Honorees tend to be the biggest U.S. companies with the biggest IT budgets. Sort of. It's indeed true that InformationWeek 500 candidates must be U.S.-based and have annual revenue of at least $500 million. And while the average revenue of companies on this year's 500 list is $9.47 billion—a size that would place a company smack in the middle of the Fortune 500—our top 25 includes several companies in the $1 billion to $3 billion range, and the average revenue of our top 10 companies is just over $8 billion. The average InformationWeek 500 company will spend $304 million on IT in 2006, or 3.2% of revenue.

  • Company size and IT spending must be trending upward, at least. Au contraire! The average revenue of an InformationWeek 500 company in 2001 was $12.47 billion, 32% more than the current average. The average IT spend in 2001 was $484 million, 59% more than it is today, as IT spending as a percentage of revenue also is on the decline. Far more important than how much you spend is how you spend it.

  • Only the hottest, most successful companies make the InformationWeek 500 cut, since business technology innovation must translate to industry leadership. Not always. While the majority of the 500 are profitable, more than a few are comebacks-in-progress, companies that are leveraging IT as they rebound from major mistakes or market collapses. Cases in point are No. 4 Global Crossing and No. 6 Sun Microsystems.

  • There must be a geographic slant, with companies clustered around Silicon Valley and the Northeast. Those areas certainly have their fair share of honorees, with 64 companies representing California and 55 in New York. But Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas are each home to more than 20 InformationWeek 500 companies. The most surprising InformationWeek 500 hotbed? Missouri, with 18 companies.

  • Past performance is an indicator of future success. Not quite, as anyone who has read a standard securities industry disclaimer can attest. The InformationWeek 500 celebrates recent accomplishment; it's not an institution that hands out tenure.

    Last year's No. 1 company, Capital One, is ranked 48th this year—still among the nation's elite IT organizations, but not at the very top of our list. Owens & Minor, the only company to top the InformationWeek 500 two separate years (2003 and 2001), chose not to participate in our survey the past two years. The overall winners in 2004 and 2002, E.&J. Gallo Winery and HIP Health Plan of New York, are still hanging strong at No. 23 and No. 34.

    Rob Preston,
    VP/Editor In Chief
    rpreston@cmp.com
    www.informationweek.com


    2. Today's Top Story

    How The InformationWeek 500 Cracks Businesses' Toughest Problems
    It's not the frothy dot-com days. But new technologies and opportunities for change have made IT fun again.

    Related Stories:

    2006 InformationWeek 500 Winner: Principal Financial Group
    Tech innovator offers workers Web tools for managing their assets and uses database marketing to effectively package products.

    Video Interview: Principal Financial Group
    We were most impressed with Principal's launch last year of its "Worksite" products, which let employees at small companies—even those who aren't investment savvy—package retirement funds, college funds, and insurance in a simple sit-down session with a company sales rep. The low-hassle approach is bringing in new customers. It's something CIO Gary Scholten calls an investment for the future.

    2006 InformationWeek 250 Listing By Rank
    Here are this year's top innovators.

    Complete 2006 InformationWeek 500 Listing
    The complete, detailed list of all 500 winners

    Slide Show: 8 Fast Facts About The InformationWeek 500
    Who are the top technology innovators? What makes them stand out among their peers? Check out our quick slide show of high-level InformationWeek 500 findings, and compare your own company to the best.


    3. Breaking News

    HP Contacted By U.S. Attorney In Press Leak Probe
    The company's legal woes continue to grow as a U.S. attorney requests information about some of HP's recent tactics.

    HP Board Agrees To Reconvene Late Monday
    The Hewlett-Packard board met via telephone conference call on Sunday to address the leak issue, which has triggered an inquiry by California's attorney general that could result in criminal liability for identity theft and illegally accessing database information.

    Dell Delays Filing Quarterly Report Because Of Probe
    The investigations have indicated the possibility of misstatements in prior period financial reports, including issues that may affect Dell's previously reported results.

    EU Widens Intel Probe
    The allegation that Intel had convinced a German electronics retailer not to carry Advanced Micro Devices products had until now been looked into by a German agency, but the probe is now being overseen by the European Commission.

    Three Years After Sobig.f, New Attack Modes
    At the third anniversary of the first really big spam-based virus, one researcher talks about the more-targeted attacks in vogue today.

    Review: Atlas Succeeds With Power Demands
    In CRN's test, the Atlas-50GA did not overheat at peak power consumption with either an Intel or an Advanced Micro Devices motherboard and with two different power configurations.

    'Second Life' Databases Hacked, 650,000 Affected
    Players' credit card information, which was stored in another database, was encrypted and not compromised, the company assured users.

    Thieves Targeting Online Games Prompt Tighter Security
    Growing in popularity, massive multiplayer online games have become targets of organized crime rings and hackers.

    Video-Game Analytics Track Players' Behavior
    More than 15 years in development, Metrics Element, a tool to collect, analyze, and distribute game data within a Web-based user interface, will ship around the first of the year.

    Xanga To Pay $1 Million For Violating Children's Protection Act
    The civil penalty was the largest ever for a Children's Online Privacy Protection Act violation.

    Facebook Founder Apologizes In Privacy Flap; Users Given More Control
    Founder Mark Zuckerberg says the social-networking site "really messed this one up."

    Intel Offloads Optical-Networking Components Business
    The divesture of the optical-networking components business is the latest in a string of moves by Intel to restructure the company around core businesses.

    All Our Latest News


    ----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----

    Just Released—2006 InformationWeek 500 Report
    The newest InformationWeek 500 report examines the best IT and business practices of the most innovative users of technology, the InformationWeek 500. Examine these organizations across core areas of operations, including IT budgets, technology deployment, strategies, and staffing. Use this report to benchmark your company's IT strategies and budgets against some of the nation's best-known companies.
    To preregister for the 2007 InformationWeek 500 list, go to http://www.informationweek.com/iw500prereg

    Security Practices
    Is your security road map headed in the right direction? InformationWeek Research's ninth annual Global Information Security survey, a joint research project with Accenture, examines security investments and priorities.

    Go In Depth On The Topics That Matter Most
    Visit the InformationWeek Download site to help you as you analyze and make purchase decisions on critical technology solutions. The site gives you exclusive access to the original InformationWeek reports in an easy-to-read format. Topics covered include security and privacy, business intelligence and analytics, networking and infrastructure, data center, and mobile and wireless.

    -----------------------------------------


    4. Grab Bag

    What Slows Windows Down? (Thepcspy.com)
    Computer users know that the more software you install, the slower the beast runs. Most also know that it's not just quantity that's at issue here: What you install plays a large factor in how slowly your computer runs. The aim of this article is to find out what types of applications slow down a computer the most.

    Former Space Tourist Takes On Microsoft (CNN.com)
    Mark Shuttleworth spent $20 million on becoming the world's second space tourist. Now he is taking on Microsoft by pioneering free computer software that he hopes will revolutionize the way computers are used.

    AOL To Stream NBC Series Premieres (BetaNews.com)
    AOL said Monday that it had reached an agreement with NBC to stream two of its new fall series to AOL users, the second time the network has turned to unconventional means to promote its shows.

    An Industry Is Based On A Simple Masquerade (New York Times)
    In recent years, dozens of Web sites have sprung up offering calling records to anyone with a credit card.


    5. In Depth: 2006 InformationWeek 500

    Home Is Where The Data Is
    Check out the home page for this year's InformationWeek 500 to find data about the survey methodology, results and analysis, as well as links to profiles of the top winners, rankings of the top 250, key advice from many of the winning companies, and much more.

    Methodology: Selecting The InformationWeek 500
    How InformationWeek identifies the most innovative users of technology.

    Leaders In Innovation
    Six InformationWeek 500 companies stand out as top innovators in their use of specific technologies. They were selected based on their work in one of the following areas: information security, productivity, wireless, supply chain, customer intimacy, and emerging technology. Included below with our own analysis are excerpts from their winning entries.

    20 Great Ideas From InformationWeek 500 Companies
    We gathered up practical insight and advice from some of the most innovative CIOs in the world and boiled it down into a fun, quick read.

    Interactive Map: Think Globally, Search Locally
    Our interactive map not only provides a geographic breakdown of the InformationWeek 500 winners, it also serves up regionally relevant data points from our 2006 Salary Survey.

    Vertical Industry Breakdown Of The InformationWeek 500
    Take a closer look at one or more of the InformationWeek 500's 21 industries. We've researched the essential facts you need to understand the latest IT trends, strategies, and investments affecting the biggest and the best companies in these key sectors of the economy.

    InformationWeek 500 Trendable Charts
    Multiyear comparisons of InformationWeek 500 survey data reveal IT trends.


    6. Voice Of Authority

    HP Must Rebuild The Damage To Its Image
    Like most everyone, I've been thinking about the victims of Sept. 11, 2001, in the past few days. I'm also remembering former Hewlett-Packard chairman Lew Platt, who died on Sept. 8 of last year, as his former company faces a criminal investigation into tactics used to hunt down the source of media leaks.


    7. White Papers

    Evolving Beyond Traditional Asset Management
    Next-generation asset management—the convergence of asset and service management—offers a way to monitor the dollars-and-cents perspectives behind running IT as a business. This analyst report reviews the evolution of traditional asset management and suggests best practices for enterprise IT.


    8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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