Enterprises are widely experimenting with Web 2.0 tools and Service-Oriented technologies to expand the collaborative reach of the organization, according to the results of a pulse survey of more than 100 participants attending the Oracle OpenWorld conference in San Francisco this week. According to the survey conducted by Capgemini U.S LLC, one of the world's foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing, the market trend with the greatest impact on business is globalization (28%), followed by increased competition (26%), and compliance (19%).
Web 2.0 tools such as social networking sites, wikis and Service-Oriented technologies are being gradually and carefully deployed to confront the pressures of seamlessly connecting people across geographies, partners across firewalls and customers across multiple channels. While 31% of participants said their organizations have piloted Web 2.0 tools and received initial positive feedback, another 29% have refrained from using Web 2.0 due to the perceived risks associated with these collaborative tools. A majority of participants also described Service Orientated Architecture (SOA) as a technology for improved integration (46%) or a way of organizing the business and redesigning business processes (42%), while only 12% suggested Service-Orientation is vendor hype.
This survey also demonstrates that the outlook for 2008 includes increased competition due to globalization, enhanced awareness of alternative technologies by customers, and a possible economic slowdown; 91% of respondents believe there will be an economic downturn and 42% believe their IT budget will decrease. A further 58% of respondents believe IT is perceived as a constraint rather than an enabler of freedom.
Andy Mulholland, Global Chief Technology Officer, Capgemini said, "In this market environment the room for cost cutting is minimal so the focus will turn to innovation. The predominant issues for the enterprise will concern the complex coordination and decision making capabilities of the front office and user demands to switch from email based collaboration to richer Web 2.0 tools. The CIO challenge will be to use the flexibility of process design enabled by SOA to support these efforts and to connect them to the existing IT functions in the back office."
According to the survey, the opportunities for IT to impact business will be most evident in the energy sector (27%), followed by media and entertainment (25%) and manufacturing (21%). Participants also suggested that business intelligence will be the most improved business function (35%) with customer relationship management (26%) and supply chain management (18%) also receiving major consideration.
"According to the responses we received, IT departments will be prioritizing application integration and adoption of web services over other tasks to make the potential of technology innovation come true," added Mulholland.
Other key findings from the Capgemini pulse survey at Oracle OpenWorld:
1. While nearly three-quarters of those surveyed at Oracle OpenWorld were from North America (72%), a significant number came from Europe (20%) and Asia (8%)
2. 39% of participants came from companies with more than $1 billion in annual revenue
3. More than half of respondents (53%) identified themselves as IT architects, while 12% were CIO/CTOs and another 20% were in sales and marketing
4. In reference to Oracle Fusion, respondents overwhelmingly considered the Enterprise Resource Planning platform to be of either major importance (43%) or somewhat importance (34%) to the future of the organization's IT.
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