The negatives for CIOs in the changing IT landscape are now well-known and well-established: the rise of shadow IT (business units bypassing IT departments for IT purchases and then having direct control over those IT products and services); the growth of the BYOD phenomenon and the attendant control, management and security challenges it imposes on IT departments; the growing trend to use external IT service providers. However on a more positive note, Harvey Nash says: “There has been a steady rise in the proportion of CIOs reporting to the CEO, from 28 percent in 2009 to 32 percent in 2013. CEOs increasingly are expecting CIOs to prioritise projects that 'make' money over 'saving' money (62 percent versus 38 percent).” It adds: “Thirty nine percent of CIOs believe they are using influencing skills more than ever before, compared to just four percent who believe they are using them less [and] 70 percent believe the CIO is becoming more strategic to the company.” But the rise of the CIO in the corporate hierarchy is not without its hurdles. Despite almost two thirds of CEOs favouring technology projects that 'make' rather than 'save' money, CIOs says they collaborate least well with their marketing and sales function. Seventy two percent say the relationship could be improved. Harvey Nash CEO, Albert Ellis, described this as “the shock finding in this survey,” adding: “[This is] a critical area given the growing importance of digital, mobile and social media." In addition to having a growing focus on the inner workings for their organisations, CIOs must also grow their external relationships. Rob Coupland, managing director of TelecityGroup UK - which helped Harvey Nash conduct the survey - said: “This focus on inward relationships is being balanced by an outward focus as CIOs continue to increase their use of outsourcing partners. This is certainly something we are seeing at TelecityGroup: for CIOs to focus their energies internally they are increasingly looking to partners to take the strain of the operational issues." CIOs were also questioned on their views of the IT skills situation, Their feedback suggests that skills shortages in mobile have grown by 11 percent this year, with a quarter of all CIOs struggling to find the right mobile talent. In addition, 25 percent of CIOs cite skills shortages in big data, and 19 percent skills shortages in social media technology, up eight percent on last year. However, despite the shift towards '21st century' talent, Harvey Hash said: “It is the 'classic' technology skills of business analysis (sought by 39 percent of CIOs), enterprise/technical architecture (39 percent) and project management (31 percent) that remain the skills most in demand overall.” // "); // ]]>

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