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America's Investment Crisis
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MyW0r1d
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MyW0r1d,
User Rank: Strategist
10/24/2013 | 8:46:49 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
I understand what you're saying Doug, but I have also seen and lived through CXOs that take comments like this to justify not investing in OS upgrades to dedicate almost the entire IT budget to BI. Specifically, a company that in 2010 was still running a Win2003 domain and servers refusing to upgrade to 2008 and only purchasing the necessary member server licenses for the BI project (leveraging SQL 2005 because "we can't invest in keeping the lights on upgrades"). Comment space is limited so a thorough discussion isn't possible and today any OS upgrade should justifiably have a virtualization/consolidation review, but some "keeping the lights on" comments should be issued with instructions.
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
10/24/2013 | 6:53:28 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
If this is the case when borrowing costs are so low, what's going to happen when the Fed finally tightens up the flow?
RobPreston
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RobPreston,
User Rank: Author
10/24/2013 | 4:07:50 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
I think this gets to Doug's point above: Companies need to move their capital investments from commodity areas to areas where those investments can make a true competitive difference.
Petar Zivovic
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Petar Zivovic,
User Rank: Strategist
10/23/2013 | 7:55:45 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
There is one thing not covered here: outsourced cloud computing. Instead of purchasing a $10k server, or spinning up a new local VM server that requires adding drives to a SAN, more companies are simply outsouring their servers to cloud providers as a service investment and saving on the hardware costs up front. This I'm sure will skew the investment numbers downwards to some extent - perhaps not enough to account for what's written here, but should be factored in nonetheless to provide a true investment picture.
aflaidar980
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aflaidar980,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/23/2013 | 5:56:35 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
Short-term-ism plagues various other industries. A particularly painful spot is the investments fall in antibiotics manufacture, where not even state funded research cannot spur growth, on the basis that healthy :) returns require at least a 10 years cycle. Wall Street has become short sighted.
D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
10/23/2013 | 5:02:32 PM
re: America's Investment Crisis
There's investment in IT innovation and then there's keep-the-lights-on IT budgets and same-old, same-old ways of doing things. In the applications arena businesses are trying to get away from building and maintaining customizations that don't add much value. In BI and data-warehousing the push is to spread access and capabilities to business users. The reality, however, is that there's still lots of wasted spending keeping the lights on, maintaining creaky old code, and building queries and reports for users rather than giving them tools so they can do it on their own.

I'm fine with the idea of spending on innovation, but cost pressure on IT budgets is not a bad thing. It forces IT to crack down on wasteful spending and approaches, and that in itself often leads to innovation. In summary, avoid blank-check IT "investment" and instead target places to invest where new technology is promising and places to crack down where costs are out of line if not out of control.


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