Gartner’s views on ROI and 2011

In this great Blog post by Robert Mitchell titled ROI fading fast as measure of IT success, Mr. Mitchell discusses the key messages planned for this weeks Gartner Symposium/ITxpo.  I walk away with several key messages:

  1. Future IT initiatives should be linked to the improvement of key business metrics and not just focused on return on investment. I have long felt that the intense focus on ROI does companies a disservice. So many value or revenue generating initiatives go unfunded because the ROI is either difficult to calculate or subjective in nature – think social media.
  2. The business use of social technologies is indeed accelerating and Gartner sees it as one of four key events driving change in the mission of IT. I continue to believe that the collaborative power of social technologies will drive better and faster innovation. How would I establish an ROI to support this belief? It takes vision to see the possibilities and as Mr. Mitchell describes – a willingness to take acceptable risk.
  3. The use of advanced analytics will rise in 2011. Content and predictive analytics will be at the forefront of this increased adoption. This broadened use will shift the analytical focus from rear-view mirror reporting to forward looking analysis. The possibilities are endless and as I have described in the past, I see the application of advanced analytics across two primary categories: Risk Management and Voice of the Customer – risk and opportunity.

So the CIO role is continually evolving and now more than ever, the CIO must be a change agent. This paradigm shift that Mr. Mitchell describes must happen. The CIO is in the unique position of seeing the value that these technologies offer a business. As described in his Blog post, the past has been about operational excellence and cost optimization. The future is about value and revenue generation. The future is now.

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