Strategic CIO // Executive Insights & Innovation
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5/17/2009
01:22 PM
Bob Evans
Bob Evans
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CIOs Seek Answers To Top Technology Questions At Interop

Top of mind for CIOs these days are some technologies with the potential to not only attack the dreaded 80/20 ratio and lower the cost of infrastructure (LTCOI) but also trigger some transformative capabilities across the customer-driven enterprise: cloud computing, data-center strategies, SaaS, mobility, IT automation, videoconferencing, unified communications, and much more. And it's all at Interop, starting today.

Top of mind for CIOs these days are some technologies with the potential to not only attack the dreaded 80/20 ratio and lower the cost of infrastructure (LTCOI) but also trigger some transformative capabilities across the customer-driven enterprise: cloud computing, data-center strategies, SaaS, mobility, IT automation, videoconferencing, unified communications, and much more. And it's all at Interop, starting today.The IT industry's biggest show runs this week in Las Vegas and, via Interop's sessions and conference tracks and exhibits, presents an opportunity for CIOs and their teams to dig into the most-urgent business-technology issues of the day. I could imagine a CIO framing out an Interop plan that includes these and similar questions to be pursued: --How much of cloud computing is hype, and how much is real capability? Which vendors are purely driving the hype, and which ones have real-world solutions? --We're in the middle of our developing a new data-center strategy - with so many IT vendors saying they have the best/fastest/safest/greenest and least-expensive approach, how can we be sure we're picking the right strategic partners and options? --And, how will developments in cloud computing affect that data-center strategy, and vice-versa? Do we need to get them both worked out before moving on either one? --How can I best articulate to the board the business value of these strategies? I know we have mountains of technical details to support the architectural plan, but what are the right business metrics for me to highlight so that I end up with not only funding but also their enthusiastic support for this plan to be a real business-changer? --Some of my top-50 IT partners have slipped in the past couple of years and I'd like to replace them with dynamic, hard-charging, and hungry young companies that'll crawl over broken glass to get my business, just the way some of these complacent ones used to. I need to make some of those changes so all of my top IT partners - not the commodity suppliers, but the strategic partners - will know that if they expect to keep my business, then they'd better be ready and eager to step up the value they're delivering. --Everybody on the board is talking about mobile, and the need for us to make advanced mobile capabilities one of the most-decisive criteria in evaluating those top-50 vendors. That covers everything from enterprise-software companies to networking companies to cloud services and security vendors: who's got nothing more than table stakes, and who's able to help my company become a breakthrough innovator for our customers? --SaaS possibilities seem to be getting less unusual and more mainstream - I see that Salesforce is getting more aggressive than ever as it adds new clients, Workday just landed $75 million in venture funding, and Oracle seems to be finally serious about the SaaS approach. We need to move beyond testing and take a significant project live - who's the right partner for us, and what's the right approach?

At Interop this week, we at Global CIO will be on the lookout for answers to these and other questions facing CIOs today as they juggle the dueling chainsaws of reduced spending with stepped-up expectations. We'll stay on top of this through the week and share some of what we're finding from Interop Las Vegas.

For more information on the show, you can check out this list of 18 technology tracks offered as part of the conference.

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