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A majority of chief information officers and IT leaders are looking at software defined solutions as a critical component of the wider information and communication technology strategy for 2015 and beyond, according to a recent survey.

To this end, CIO are also focused on acquiring a “new breed of business-oriented” IT staff able to translate business needs into policy frameworks that support IT automation, according to results of a poll recently conducted by international IT solutions and managed services firm Logicalis.

The company surveyed 177 CIOs and IT directors from mid-sized companies in some 24 countries across North America, Latin America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.

The poll showed that two thirds, or 61 per cent of respondents expect software defined solutions to impact their IT services and delivery strategies within the next three years. Thirty four per cent expect these changes to happen in the next two years and 10 per cent expect to use software defined solutions in the next 12 months.

“These findings are entirely in keeping with CIO’s priorities as they strive to re-invent IT departments as service brokers and Internet service providers,” said Mark Rogers, president of Logicalis, in a statement.

He said software defined networking (SDN) and software defined data centres (SDDC) technologies have the potential to transform networks and data centres into “dynamic service platforms.”

The policy driven programmability of SDN and SDDC makes it easier for internal service providers to respond to business demand for agile IT and cuts the cost of managing complex environments.

Logicalis also found that 65 per cent of CIOs are prepared to pay more for IT talent required to leverage software defined solutions. A quarter of IT leaders said they would pay five to 10 per cent above normal salary and a fifth (22 per cent) said they would pay 10 per cent to 20 per cent more.

Thirty four per cent of CIOs named “technical skills” as top of priority in recruiting IT staff. Communication skills came in as 28 per cent; service management, 15 per cent; and business analysis, 12 per cent.

“All of the CIOs surveyed in some way recognized the transfer of focus from technology management to business service delivery and this is now reflecting in the skills ‘premium’ many are now expecting and willing to pay for more business aligned employees,” said Rogers.



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