Innovator, Firefighter, or Ghost? Cisco Global Survey Reveals Insight Into IT's Impact on the Business

Innovator, Firefighter, or Ghost? Cisco Global Survey Reveals Insight Into IT's 
Impact on the Business 
International Report Assesses Effectiveness of IT Leaders to Align
Network Strategy With Business Initiatives; Survey Also Assesses IT's
Adoption of Latest Industry Trends 
SAN JOSE, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 05/08/13 --  As businesses increase
the number of new application rollouts and create new connected user
experiences to better serve their customers, IT organizations face
the challenge of expanding network services and aligning their
network strategies to meet the requirements of the business. A global
study announced today by Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) revealed that while the
majority (63 percent) of IT professionals is confident in their
ability to respond to the needs of the business, almost a third (27
percent) still equated the visibility of their IT department into
their company's business initiatives to a foggy day in London. 
The 2013 Cisco Global IT Impact Survey provides insight into IT's
role as a business enabler, assesses the extent by which network
investments are keeping pace with the demands of the business, and
looks into IT's likelihood to adopt new technologies that can
increase IT business impact. 
The top research findings reveal: 

--  Applications and user expectations are becoming more complex: almost
    three-fourths of IT participants (71 percent) reported that IT is
    deploying more applications today than one year ago.
--  IT and the network are increasingly recognized as enabling the
    business: a higher percentage (78 percent) stated the network is more
    critical for delivering applications than it was at this time last
--  IT-business alignment is improving, but IT is not always involved when
    the decisions are made: nearly nine out of 10 (89 percent) IT leaders
    collaborate with line of business leaders at least on a monthly basis,
    indicating a mutual business understanding of the critical and growing
    role of the network for application delivery. However, more than
    one-third (38 percent) of IT professionals surveyed said they are
    brought into the planning and deployment process late.

Among other findings, the Cisco Global
 IT Impact Survey also provided
insight into IT sentiment toward emerging trends such as Software
Defined Networking (SDN) and the Internet of Things. Results showed
that one-third (34 percent) say they've seen an actual SDN deployment
as often as they've seen Bigfoot, Elvis, or the Loch Ness Monster,
while less than half (42 percent) claim to be vaguely familiar with
the Internet of Things. 
Detailed Findings 
Increasing Alignment between IT and Business Leaders, But More Work
Is Needed 

--  When asked to compare the visibility of IT within their organization,
    36 percent said "innovator" was the best description of how business
    leaders viewed their role. Additionally, 34 percent claimed
    "orchestrator" was the best fit, 15 percent chose "firefighter," 7
    percent said "ghost," and 7 percent selected "fortune teller."
--  Although survey data indicates the majority of IT leaders feel they
    are closely aligned with business practices, business applications are
    still being deployed without their knowledge. More than three-quarters
    (76 percent) of IT said business leaders and other non-IT teams roll
    out new applications without engaging IT either "all the time" or
--  Furthermore, more than one-third (38 percent) of IT professionals
    surveyed claim they are brought into the planning and deployment
    process either "during the rollout process" or "the day before
    rollout." This data indicates that when businesses move ahead with new
    initiatives without first consulting IT, the network may be challenged
    with handling the new applications.
--  IT leaders were asked to describe their attitudes toward asking
    business decision makers for budget toward network infrastructure
    upgrades. 18 percent said they would rather "break out of prison or
    train for a triathlon" than ask for additional budget.
--  When asked how they know if they're doing a good job, one-quarter (26
    percent) said "nobody calls us." Nearly another quarter (23 percent)
    chose "I sleep at home instead of the office."

Industry's New Business Opportunities Challenge Network Readiness 

--  Even with the business understanding of the growing role of the
    network for application delivery, 82 percent of respondents
    acknowledged that user experience with standard business applications
    is affected by network performance, even in basic applications such as
    Web, file services and email.
--  When asked about the leading causes responsible for slowing down a new
    application rollout over the past year, most cited budget (34
    percent), while 26 percent of respondents claimed data center
    infrastructure readiness, cloud readiness and network limitations such
    as bandwidth. One-quarter (25 percent) cited "general procrastination"
    as the leading cause.
--  71percent are planning to deploy SDN solutions in the next 12 months.
    The main reasons? One-third (33 percent) cite cost savings, while
    another third (33 percent) said fast scalability of infrastructure.
--  Almost three quarters (71 percent) report IT is deploying more
    applications than a year ago, but 41 percent claimed their networks
    were not ready to support "bring your own device" (BYOD) policies,
    while 38 percent said they were not ready to support cloud
--  When asked to gauge their readiness for Internet of Things
    applications and deployments, nearly half (48 percent) believe it will
    open up new business opportunities.
--  Survey participants ranked cloud readiness (29 percent) as the most
    important network initiative to their business in the upcoming year,
    followed by "converging IT technology and operations technology" (28
    percent) and "data center consolidation/virtualization" (27 percent).
--  When asked to rank the most difficult IT initiative over the past
    year, moving applications to the cloud (40 percent) ranked first, with
    data center virtualization ranking second (38 percent). This data
    aligns with the 2012 Cisco(R) Global Cloud Networking Survey, which
    found that some IT professionals would rather get a root canal, dig a
    ditch, or do their own taxes than address network challenges
    associated with cloud deployments.
--  Also consistent with the results of the 2012 Cisco Global Cloud
    Networking Survey was security being selected as the No. 1 roadblock
    to a successful implementation of cloud services or mobility, as 80
    percent cited it as a challenge.

Supporting Quotes 
"More than ever, IT has the potential to make a profound impact on
the business -- and opportunity to act as a strategic partner -- by
building a network architecture that can leverage multiple technology
transitions," said Rob Soderbery, senior vice president and general
manager, Cisco Enterprise Networking Group. "The most successful IT
professionals are those who acknowledge that fast decision-making
within the enterprise is directly tied to the readiness of the

--  The Cisco Global IT Impact Sur
vey, which included participation from
    more than 1,300 IT decision makers in 13 countries, was commissioned
    to measure the impact of IT professionals on the decisions that shape
    their businesses, as well as measure the relevance of the network to
    the business.
--  The survey was commissioned by Cisco and distributed by Insight
    Express with the goal of helping business leaders and IT organizations
    to better understand the challenges related to enabling new innovative
    smart business processes.
--  The countries that participated in the survey were: Australia, Brazil,
    Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Spain,
    the United Kingdom and the United States.
--  The complete findings are available at

Public Announcement of Survey Results at Interop Las Vegas
 The results
of the survey will be announced today at Interop Las Vegas 2013
during Rob Soderbery's keynote at 8:30 a.m. PDT. In his keynote,
which can be viewed online at, Soderbery, Cisco
SVP & GM, Enterprise Networking Group, will demonstrate how the
network enables this business transformation by connecting the
unconnected and better connecting the connected, by being more
intelligent, context-aware, open, programmable and agile. Soderbery
will also show examples of how IT can support more aspects of the
business by using the network as a platform for the Internet of
Everything, providing the groundwork for IT and business leaders to
discover opportunities they never thought possible. 
Supporting Resources 

--  Read more on the Cisco Global IT Impact Survey
--  Read more on the Cisco Global Cloud Networking Survey, announced at
    Interop Las Vegas 2012
--  Read more on the Cisco Global Work Your Way Study, announced at Cisco
    Live London 2013
--  Visit Cisco Borderless Networks website
--  Follow Cisco Enterprise and Cisco_Mobility on Twitter
--  Cisco's view of the "Internet of Everything"
--  Cisco's Open Network Environment
--  Cisco Application Experience

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