Digitization Competing for Limited Technology Spend

Press Release

Cybersecurity continues to be a top concern

MENLO PARK, Calif. – November 15, 2016 – Although organizations are trying to shift more of their technology spend toward leveraging technology disruptors to innovate their business models as a means to deliver greater returns, the complexity of digitization and limited technology budgets in many organizations still remain significant barriers to the rate of adoption, according to results of a new survey benchmarking technology leaders’ priorities. The survey report, titled “From Cloud, Mobile, Social, IoT and Analytics to Digitization and Cybersecurity,” was released today by global consulting firm Protiviti. As the scope associated with protecting and growing business value becomes more measureable and data-driven, technology leaders are working to optimize limited spend across business winitiatives that will potentially add more value to the enterprise, while they are still tethered to information platforms that consume the majority of budgets (55 percent) for ‘lights on’ operational and maintenance initiatives and are allocating only 13 percent to innovation.

The results of Protiviti’s survey of technology leaders magnify the current state of operations, challenges and competing priorities for technology spend in large to small companies in a wide mix of industries. Nearly 400 C-suite executives participated in this year’s survey to provide feedback on the priorities for their organizations. The report is available for download at http://www.protiviti.com/ittrends.

Key Findings: Data-Driven Shift

Examples of the data-driven shift revealed by the survey findings include the increased adoption of cloud computing (64 percent are investing in this area), digitization (57 percent), big data (57 percent), and agile projects (44 percent). Organizations in the financial services (70 percent) and consumer products and retail (67 percent) industries are currently leading the IT innovation charge.

“Business-minded technology leaders across the enterprise, both within and beyond the IT department, have made stunning progress in terms of delivering increased levels of value during the last few years as they have shifted more of their technology spend from legacy maintenance activities towards digitization or digital transformation initiatives,” said Kurt Underwood, a Protiviti managing director and global leader of the firm’s Technology Consulting practice. “Yet more progress is needed to ensure that data-centric security and privacy matters remain top of mind in the design and operating effectiveness of cybersecurity controls. Many digitization initiatives can quickly create new cybersecurity vulnerabilities. Without the right oversight, capabilities and metrics, management teams and boards are too often getting blindsided by data breaches.”

What’s Driving IT Transformation Efforts?

With a majority of organizations (54 percent) currently undergoing a major IT transformation, survey respondents reported the following drivers of these initiatives:

  • New functionality                                53%
  • Cost optimization                                43%
  • Operational improvement                    41%
  • Adoption of emerging technology        40%
  • Business/IT alignment                         38%

What’s Impeding IT Transformation Efforts?

Conversely, the following roadblocks are causing challenges for companies as they strive to find new ways to navigate a rapidly changing environment:

  • Legacy infrastructure                                     43%
  • IT culture not agile to change                         39%
  • IT skills gap                                                   37%
  • Legacy processes                                           36%
  • Cost/budget limitations                                 36%

Not surprisingly, different industry sectors have different IT funding priorities. For example, financial services companies spend significantly more of their IT budgets on security (23 percent), while health care providers devote a higher portion of their IT budgets to IT operations and maintenance (58 percent).

About the Survey

Protiviti's annual technology survey was fielded in the second and third quarters of 2016, primarily in the United States. The survey’s 396 respondents work in the public, private, government and non-profit sectors in organizations ranging from under $100 million to more than $20 billion in revenue.

Survey Resources Available: Report, Infographic, Video

“From Cloud, Mobile, Social, IoT and Analytics to Digitization and Cybersecurity” and an infographic of the survey highlights, along with a short video, are available for complimentary download at www.protiviti.com/ittrends.


About Protiviti

Protiviti (www.protiviti.com) is a global consulting firm that delivers deep expertise, objective insights, a tailored approach, and unparalleled collaboration to help leaders confidently face the future. Protiviti and its independent and locally owned Member Firms provide clients with consulting and managed solutions in finance, technology, operations, data, digital, legal, governance, risk and internal audit through its network of more than 85 offices in over 25 countries.

Named to the 2022 Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For® list, Protiviti has served more than 80 percent of Fortune 100 and nearly 80 percent of Fortune  500 companies. The firm also works with smaller, growing companies, including those looking to go public, as well as with government agencies. Protiviti is a wholly owned subsidiary of Robert Half (NYSE: RHI). Founded in 1948, Robert Half is a member of the S&P 500 index.

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Kathy Keller
Kathy Keller