IT directors are warming to the concept of outsourcing, but are still concerned about losing vital knowledge and managing such huge projects.
A survey of 700 IT directors and managers commissioned by IT services company Synstar found that respondents have an ambiguous relationship with outsourcing.
With IT skills shortages still an issue, 36 per cent of senior IT professionals believe that outsourcing offers access to a greater skills pool.
At the same time, half of respondents see it as the most effective way to cut costs and improve performance.
But more than one in 10 see outsourcing as a threat to job security; one third are concerned about the danger of losing intellectual property; and 56 per cent feel it is difficult to control large projects.
Russell Flower, director of managed services at Synstar, told vnunet.com: "Overall there is more pessimism this year about the threat of outsourcing on jobs, but IT managers are warming to the idea of outsourcing.
"There is a certain maturity that says let's not fear it, let's turn it to our advantage."
Gaining value for money is high on the agenda, with 71 per cent of respondents admitting that IT budgets for the next 12 months will either remain static or fall.
And yet 18 per cent do not know or measure what kind of return on investment (ROI) they get from such projects, and almost a third admit that they do not always get ROI from their IT investments.
The survey also found that the culture of long hours is alive and well in IT, with 95 per cent working more than 37 hours a week. Some 42 per cent work through lunch breaks, and 94 per cent take calls out of work hours.
And despite their commitment, almost 60 per cent do not feel valued at board level.
"I don't think we're making much headway there," said Flower. "There is still a huge number of IT departments under the finance director's umbrella.
"If IT is at the core of your business, I have difficulty understanding why that's a good thing."
But with almost one in five respondents admitting that they had changed technologies for the sake of new technology, perhaps it is a good thing that someone else is holding the purse strings.
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