CEOs pinning their hopes on IT, especially social media: IBM survey

CEOs around the world say information technology will be the biggest business game changer over the next three years, topping even global economic conditions that continue to wreak havoc on their best laid plans.

Almost two-thirds (71 per cent) of 1,700 CEOs surveyed by IBM predicttechnology will be the number one factor to impact their organization’sfuture in the next three years, ahead of shifting economic and marketconditions.

Drilling down into how the top execs plan to harness technology totheir advantage, the survey found many are pinning their hopes onsocial media. Though only 16 percent of the CEOs surveyed are nowusing social business platforms, 57 percent expect to adopt themwithin the next three to five years.

“One of the most compelling findings is how in tune CEOs are about theimplications and impact of social media,” said Bridget van Kralingen,senior vice-president of IBM Global Business Services, in a newsrelease.

About 70 per cent of the CEOs also plan to make big investments in ITspecifically to gain deeper insight into their customers usingavailable data.

Using IT to promote collaboration – both internally and with externalpartners – is top-of-mind for CEOs too. More than half of them (53 percent) plan to use technology to collaborate better with outsidepartners, while 52 per cent aim to improve collaboration internallywithin their organizations.

Over two-thirds plan to partner “extensively” with external players, upfrom 2008 when just over half of CEOs voiced the same goal.

It’s the fifth edition of the IBM Global CEO Study series, whichsurveys CEOs every two years. This year CEOs from 18 industries werepolled in 64 countries.

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