CIOs are in a bind. For at least a decade they’ve been declared “chief innovation officers” and charged with championing and introducing game-changing technologies to their companies. This has gone well. When it comes to activities such as the management of infrastructure, process automation, and the establishment of architectures that mix client- and cloud-based systems, innovation has been the result. Cloud-first and mobile-first approaches have also served CIOs well, leading to new IT…
With IT departments increasingly being asked not only to expand the reach and roster of their services, but also innovate in terms of how these services are delivered to citizens, more and more Middle East government CIOs are approaching IDC with questions on how to meet these twin demands without pushing complexities to unmanageable levels. And with end-user expectations and service delivery requirements ratcheting up by the day, that task is not becoming any easier, so which technology investments in particular are they focusing on? (Originally published October 9, 2014)
Of IDC's four pillars, it is fair to say that enterprise mobility is way ahead of the rest, with interest slowly growing in the implementation of Big Data/analytics, cloud computing (where private cloud continues to outpace interest in public cloud services), and social media/social business solutions. Working together, these 3rd Platform solutions drive optimal IT performance by enhancing system availability, increasing asset utilization, enabling connectivity, optimizing applications…
With a recent IDC Health Insights survey of hospitals across the MEA identifying a strong correlation between IT infrastructure investment plans and a desire among hospitals to increase patient satisfaction, healthcare providers across the Middle East are increasingly switching their attention to the so-called 3rd Platform technologies of mobility, cloud, and big data and the benefits they can bring. So what does the future hold for eHealth in the Middle East? (Originally published September 18, 2014.)
Given the wide array of emerging information and communication technology (ICT) tools that now reside at their finger tips, the focus of eHealth stakeholders across the region is increasingly on enabling the remote management of diseases, improving data exchange and collaboration across healthcare agencies, increasing workforce efficiency, and ultimately expanding the coverage of adequate healthcare services to a wider population.
We are already seeing this in the digitization of patient…
Social networking is among the megatrends currently revolutionizing the consumer and enterprise IT space. The concept has enjoyed tremendous adoption rates and become mainstream in the consumer space across Gulf countries such as the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia, with strong Internet penetration and a young, tech-savvy population serving as the key drivers. In addition, the increasing demand for ubiquitous access to information and the growing collaboration needs of users are also contributing to this uptake. (Originally published September 24, 2014.)
The utilization of social networks among consumers has attracted the attention of some enterprises in the Gulf region, but the strong consumer adoption has not translated into expected increases in business. Most of the organizations we speak to remain unconvinced of the benefits of social enterprise technologies, and as such, they are only investing in certain parts of the solution. IDC's worldwide studies reveal that the mostly used components of the social enterprise concept include online…
IT managers in Poland are probably more relaxed than their international counterparts in Central and Eastern Europe. The main reason: trust. A recent IDC survey creates an informal trust index that indicates IT managers in Poland, relative to managers in other CEE countries, are less worried about staff messing up carefully configured systems or leaking data.
This is a bit unexpected. While Poland rarely makes the top lists of source countries for hacking or other online attacks, it has traditionally scored below average in polls of interpersonal trust done by the OECD. And a comprehensive 2013 study conducted inside Poland argues that poles are losing what little trust they have in each other.
That Hungary landed the second spot is also surprising. It is often named as one of the countries producing the most malicious activity. According to a…
The potential of cloud-based services has found expression in beautifully crafted marketing material from IT firms and consulting firms alike. Most of the visions are on the right track. What they fail to show is the development of the backend and the winners and losers that will emerge as cloud becomes a dominant IT paradigm.
Less than ten years ago, technology scholars Frank Levy and Richard Murnane argued that driverless cars were likely not possible. The argument was simple. Computers could never reproduce the combination of reflexes, sensory inputs, selective attention, spatial reasoning, and coordination required to navigate traffic and park a vehicle. Google has proved them wrong.
Along with players such as Amazon, Salesforce, NetSuite, and a slew of smaller firms, Google is also proving that traditional…
To make Central and Eastern Europe more competitive – increase government IT budgets (except in the Czech Republic)
The numbers for the EU member states of Central and Eastern are encouraging. This year, GDP growth is forecast to grow by more than 2% in countries such as the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, and Hungary, and by more than 3% in places such as Poland and Latvia. Policymakers should help maintain the momentum by making better use of IT – which should include increasing budgets.
The Czech Republic is an unfortunate outlier. Collectively, government bodies in the country spend more on IT per capita than anywhere else in Central and Eastern Europe. But the Czech public sector is not getting its money's worth. On the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Index (EODB), the country ranks below all of its CEE regional cohorts.
Although it only started in 2001, the EODB Index is already a venerable measure of the business environment. The annual survey examines ten criteria…
IT specialists, managers, and leaders must stop talking and start shouting at top management about IT security. Put another way, they must manage the managers to make IT security a top goal.
Back in 2003, famed American investor Warren Buffet warned that complex financial instruments were "financial weapons of mass destruction." He asserted that they overstate values, can create debt and other spirals that lead to corporate meltdown, and even undermine the economy. Government and banks largely ignored the implied advice of regulation, resulting in a recession that may have fundamentally altered the economies of North America and Europe.
The same thing is now happening with IT and…
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