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April 14, 2014

Businesses have ‘out-of-date and weak understanding’ of the latest technologies

About 66% of senior business leaders are falling behind in their understanding of cloud, big data and the Internet of things (IoT).

By Amy-Jo Crowley

An increasing number of businesses are lagging behind in their understanding of the latest technologies including the Internet of Things (IoT), big data and cloud, research firm Gartner has found.

But they rank it as one of their top priorities in fuelling the growth of their business for 2014 and 2015, a survey by the analyst firm revealed.

Nearly 21% of 410 CEOs and COOs among other senior business leaders in large organisations rated IT-related issues as one of their top three priorities, which is the highest figure for more than a decade.

But about 66% of those respondents have a relatively weak and out-of-date understanding of how to deploy and make use of it, according to Gartner.

Mark Raskino, VP and Gartner fellow for IT management, told CBR: "It’s so shocking but it’s true. They’ve been focusing on other things like getting through the financial crisis for the past five years.

"But the priority of technology in the minds of business leaders is as high as it’s been for more than a decade. My estimation is that we won’t hit another high watermark for a long time."

"What will happen is that business leaders will tend to invest fairly quickly and be decisive, but they may not really understand what they’re investing in very well."

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He added that big data, IoT, mobile and cloud would have secondary consequences for all businesses including banks and insurance companies.

The issue will be how the world changes around them, particularly with regard to data streaming from these objects, which will change information landscape, the marketing divisions’ points and decision-making.

When asked what advice he would give to CIOs, he said: "They should spend a disproportionate amount of effort on educating their boards and executive committees on the depths of the technology, so management education, such as inviting speakers into board meetings and training days with universities, has to be a key part of what the CIO does for the company"

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