6. Mobile Mayhem for CIOs: A seemingly unending stream of market introductions for new mobile devices - with disparate standards - is reordering the role of CIOs to focus on a growing list of data integration, data disruption and security issues. As these chief technology executives grapple with their number one and two priorities - protect corporate intellectual/financial property...and keep their business running - watch for other executive areas to pick up IT management responsibilities for what will become "more routine" areas. (See below!)
7. CFO Role Reordering: The combination of a rapidly changing/challenging global economy, and the increasing commoditization of routine business software feature/functions, is moving application software decision-making responsibilities to non-technical roles. Watch for the CFO and line of business executives/managers to increasingly be the decision makers for routine software applications in the enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer/constituent relationship management (CRM) space.
8. Technology Buyers will Boycott "Lock-In" Policies: As business software buyers become increasingly wary of vendor lock-in policies that limit their options to respond to rapid change circumstances, they will increasingly favor options that provide "post implementation agility." Options to port deployment in and out of the cloud, and to continuously reorganize/restructure without major cost/disruption, will be favored over all-cloud and/or rigidly coded software options that won't change easily.
9. Excellent Customer Service will be a Competitive Advantage: Many cloud- and app-based companies offer minimal customer service, tending toward spotty self-help forums that provide uneven and unproven support. Customers will increase their due diligence into the companies handling their critical data, and will expect customer service to be part of the value they receive. A SaaS model encourages good customer service because switching to a new vendor is less disruptive.
"What is occurring in the business software world is a convergence of mobile/social/cloud dynamics, overlaid by an increasingly younger user base that has different requirements," explained Shelley Zapp, CEO of UNIT4 Business Software. "Gone are the days when technology solutions are relegated only to IT departments and senior level executives - or are minimized to data entry only. Today's faster moving, more agile workforces know how to use technology to impact results, and companies like UNIT4 that offer the means to put these solutions into the right hands will provide the best value to companies and organizations."
About UNIT4 Business Software
UNIT4 Business Software is the North American subsidiary of UNIT4, a $550 million global business software and services company that creates, provides and supports software for Businesses Living IN Change - delivered via the cloud or on-premise. It offers solutions that help these fast-changing public, private, non-profit and higher education "BLINC" organizations embrace business change - simply, quickly and cost-effectively. UNIT4 Agresso, the company's flagship Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) suite and UNIT4 Coda Financials, its best-of-class financial management software, are used by 6000+ organizations in more than 100 countries. For more information visit www.unit4software.com or follow the company on Twitter, LinkedIn and Innovating4Change, the company blog.
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