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Sailing Through the Storm

T.C. Seow | Sept. 27, 2011
If the 2011 State of the Asian CXO Survey has a message for all, it is this: Time to change. And fast.

Table 10

Are Asian CXOs preoccupied with security? Or is the reason really a lack of domain expertise and knowhow to best realise the potential social computing could bring to the table? 

Undeniably, consumer tastes and behaviours have changed tremendously over the last few years. Now with ubiquitous devices in their hands, consumers rely more and more on peer reviews and social networks to seek out the best offers, or to check what others say before parting with their money. Organisations which are able to take advantage of such trends in consumerism, and be part of the active social networks will undoubtedly stand to benefit in the long run. 

 

Be Ready for the Storm Ahead

How will the uncertainty in the global economy affect IT investments in the next three years - asked one respondent. Sad to say, the survey did not show any major shifts in the issues CXOs are facing, nor new ideas on how best to face off the impending downturn. They are still struggling with aligning IT and business goals, and this does not bode well for organisations going forward, considering the current economic climates. 

Innovation is not a top priority; CXOs are still citing the same reasons blocking innovation. They must overcome these obstacles to bring about creative ideas and innovation soon to enable the organisation to grow. 

Apart from India and Singapore to a small extent, outsourcing is not a consideration for most CXOs. In-house app development should only be considered if there are no such skills available from outsourcing providers. 

CXOs don't seem to have a handle on the business environment. Not understanding the business environment well will hinder business and organisational growths. No time for strategic thinking is no excuse when business is conducted at Internet speeds. 

Efforts to move services to the cloud seem very tentative. CXOs should have the ability to grasp the potential benefits of the cloud for their organisations, and grasp them as soon as possible, given the current economic outlook.

Not understanding or ignoring social media is a big risk. CXOs should move beyond concerns like security and productivity loss and look at the positive results social media can bring to their organisation, in how they engage Gen-Y customers, build brand value through social networks, and rise up to become reputable organisations whom people can trust via social media. CXOs should look at recruiting people who can be champions of their brands.

The world economy is turning for the worse. CXOs are ignoring trends like cloud computing and social media at their own peril. Unless CXOs move away from mundane issues and prioritise innovation, they are likely to find the road ahead even tougher come 2012 and beyond. 

 

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