Security: The number one worry for IT pros
An interesting study from services company Synstar landed on our desk this morning claiming to identify the various pressures faced by IT managers and IT Directors in European companies with more than 200 employees.
The questions asked were broken down into three critical areas: internal business issues; IT issues; and external issues. These were then broken down further to include sub-questions about concerns like demanding users, IT costs, work-life balance. Guess what most of these people are worried about: Security.
It seems strange to think that IT managers and directors are overly concerned about the security of their organisations systems, given that security spending has slumped dramatically over the past couple of years. And even more peculiar, in light of wars, terrorist attacks and a constant drone about cyber terrorists, is the revelation that these same managers and directors are actually less concerned about security this year than they were last. But still, 36% of them said they were worried about security and 49% said that they had some concerns.
The other major bug-bear that keeps the directors awake at night is the bombardment of new technologies; 25% said they were worried about the latest technologies and 55% said they had some concerns. The other big one as far as the respondents were concerned is availability. With businesses increasingly turning global the demand for 24x7 services is paramount and that's scaring the hell out of a lot of managers. 30% said they had some serious worries about this side of their operations whilst 51% said they had some concerns.
Naturally, concerns persist over the involvement of IT at board level and the strategic side of operations too, with 27% of the respondents saying they were worried about both of these things. Interestingly, the topics covered by the majority of the press - skills shortages, costs, Government support for IT and the economic climate - were all low registers on the 'worried' scale.
When you get into what were once known as the 'soft issues' things start to change again. Despite the past couple of years being sorely marked by an economic downturn, relatively few (20%), were worried about that and even fewer (9%), seemed concerned about their job security.
The one thing that is clearly of some concern however is the increasingly popular buzz-word theory of the Work Life Balance. Out of the 700 respondents, 23% said they were worried about this aspect of their role and 53% said they had some concerns - presumably they aren't heading to the divorce courts just yet.
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