View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. Technology
July 31, 2008

Customer focus drives UK firms’ competitiveness

Customer focus has ousted cost savings as the major driver of IT development, according to a CBI survey.

By Janine Milne

The report, based on the views of 500 UK companies, investigated technology’s role in making UK firms competitive. Alongside a greater emphasis on putting customers centre stage, it pinpointed how globalisation was putting pressure on UK companies to be more efficient and examine the costs of IT development in different locations. Globalisation’s effects were also seen in the number of UK firms recruiting foreign IT staff. Some 59% (up from 52% two years ago) said they employed foreign IT staff, and 25% hired Indian staff and 11% Chinese IT staff. Rather than meeting staffing shortages, the main driver behind this hiring policy was international growth, cited by 61%.

Respondents also said that they would welcome help from government. More than four in 10 wanted support in using IT service to access overseas markets, and 39% thought that a national centre of excellence to identify and sharing best practice would be beneficial.

The report highlights ways for government to help companies better exploit the benefits of IT. Business wants clearer and more consistent policies on e-commerce, support for overseas activities, and measures to address technology and skills weaknesses, and security vulnerabilities,” said John Cridland, deputy director-general of the CBI.

While large and small companies said IT had played a major role in their ability to enter new product or geographical markets, this was less true for mid-sized companies. They were also the least likely group to outsource their IT.

Content from our partners
Unlocking growth through hybrid cloud: 5 key takeaways
How businesses can safeguard themselves on the cyber frontline
How hackers’ tactics are evolving in an increasingly complex landscape

Websites in our network
Select and enter your corporate email address Tech Monitor's research, insight and analysis examines the frontiers of digital transformation to help tech leaders navigate the future. Our Changelog newsletter delivers our best work to your inbox every week.
  • CIO
  • CTO
  • CISO
  • CSO
  • CFO
  • CDO
  • CEO
  • Architect Founder
  • MD
  • Director
  • Manager
  • Other
Visit our privacy policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.