Contrary to popular perception, return on investment is not the be all and end all for finance directors at UK businesses when it comes to determining technology investment decisions.
That’s the startling – and no doubt somewhat controversial – conclusion from a new study of UK decision makers carried out by Unisys, which argues that quality of service, customer experiences, service levels and overall business value are more important. Nontheless cutting costs remains highly important.
Unisys surveyed 400 senior decisions makers with both finance and IT responsibilities in organisations with over 500 people to determine the extent to which technology investment is delivering a return on investment.
The most significant move away from ROI as a vital factor in making a technology investment is seen in the public sector – where the money being spent is of course someone else’s… - but financial services, telcos, utilities, manufacturing and retail all register shifts in opinion.
According to the study results, oganisations which are perceived to be doing well measure their success against service levels, customer experiences and service quality, while the worst performing IT department measure success in relation to direct cost savings.
Unisys suggests that the fact that technology is giving finance directors greater access to more company information about their own organisations and as such they can see more benefits than mere cost-based justification for IT spending.
The study also predicts that in the future most organisations believe that IT investment will be of the greatest value to business through such improved accessibility of information and raised customer service levels.