Technology Will Soon Drive Customer Experience
This year, businesses will see technology's role continue to encompass all aspects of the company, reaching well beyond the IT department, a new study shows.
The survey from technology research company Gartner found that chief information officers are increasingly using technologies, including analytics and business intelligence, mobility and cloud computing to address major company-wide priorities, such as improving the overall customer experience.
"Survey results show that CIOs believe that the customer experience is the greatest opportunity for IT-enabled innovation," said Dave Aron, vice president and Gartner Fellow. "As business executives see the potential of technology to transform customer channels and the customer experience, their view of technology has leapfrogged conventional ideas of IT."
CIOs in the survey ranked increasing the use of analytics and business intelligence as their top technology priority, saying they're increasingly combining them with other technologies to create new capabilities – such as analytics plus mobility for field sales and operations and analytics plus social media for customer engagement.
Other top priorities include mobile technologies and cloud computing. The study found that 61 percent of businesses plan to improve their mobile capability over the next three years.
The majority of businesses have a mobility strategy that calls for becoming a market leader in their industry, suggesting there will be significant competition as everyone seeks to be above average.
"Applying technology as part of amplifying the enterprise reflects both the changing nature of business strategies and executive expectations about the role of technology in realizing those strategies," said Mark McDonald, group vice president for Gartner Executive Programs. "Mobility, social media, information and analytics can be used to re-imagine the customer experience, as well as sales and service channels."
The study was based on surveys of 2,335 CIOs, representing more than $321 billion in CIO IT budgets and covering 37 industries in 45 countries.
Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who spent 10 years working as a newspaper reporter before working in public relations. You can reach him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @cbrooks76.