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Evolving role of IT: innovation and integration

February 03, 2014

IT jobs are on the rise—and they're evolving. As technology becomes increasingly central to business success, executives are turning to their IT teams to develop new strategies that provide a competitive edge. Segregated IT teams that work solely on infrastructure and device management are a thing of the past. The future of IT will have innovation and integration at its core.

At the Cisco Live Europe 2014 conference, which was held January 27-31 in Milan, industry experts discussed the evolving role of IT. Chris Dedicoat, president for the EMEA region at Cisco, explained that CEOs are looking for new types of input from IT, Computer Weekly reported. As businesses focus on innovation, they want technology solutions that free up more time for cutting-edge projects and they view their IT teams as partners in developing the company's vision and strategy, the source added. For example, organizations need new ways to interact with customers, speed product delivery, identify industry trends in real time and make greater use of information assets.

"Companies are looking at IT in a very different way because they already spend a huge amount of money on IT but want it to do different things," Dedicoat said, according to the source. "CEOs want it to be able to drive business velocity at a far different pace."

This insight resonates with the executive priorities identified by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)'s 2014 US CEO survey. According to the report, 86 percent of CEOs expect technology to drive business transformation over the next five years. Company leaders are investing in business analytics, social business processes, mobile engagement and cybersecurity, the survey found, and they need skilled professionals to manage IT network services and creatively develop innovative business strategies.

In short, CEOs are rethinking the role and scope of IT at their organizations, creating new possibilities for IT careers. In particular, IT professionals with specialty industry knowledge will be key assets in cross-functional business teams, PwC indicated.

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