Survey: info management and efficiency top IT priorities

Information management ranked as the most critical IT priority for improving business performance by 75 percent of respondents to an IBM survey of midsize companies conducted last spring. "At a time when digital information is growing every day at a rate eight times the volume housed in all U.S. libraries, organizations need ways to cope with information overload by turning this data into real intelligence," according to an announcement from Big Blue.

Efficiency and productivity topped the list of most pressing business challenges, according to 80 percent of respondents, followed by improving customer care (74 percent). The impact of the economy on IT budgets has caused 53 percent to actually increase or re-prioritize their spending, with 37 percent reporting a decrease. Yet more than two-thirds of those surveyed are planning or currently implementing their top IT priorities, the survey says.

The computer technology giant notes that 83 percent of respondents say improving efficiency is a key priority, while 74 percent cite enhancing customer service. When Golden State Medical Supply, a midsize pharmaceutical manufacturer, faced new drug tracking regulations, "we saw an opportunity to innovate," CEO Jim Stroud said in the announcement. The drug maker developed a system for pharmaceutical tracing that serializes products at the saleable unit and deploys RFID tagging for case shipments. "This has helped us enhance customer service, differentiate our services from the competition, and strengthen the security of our processes," Stroud added.

- here's the announcement

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