Dollars and Cents
There's no relief in sight for those who manage IT budgets. Asked what the biggest roadblock is to implementing new technology, nearly two-thirds cited a limited budget. Other reasons included unclear ROI (15 percent) and inadequate staffing (10 percent).
Kawasaki Motors Corp., in Irvine, Calif., is looking at a 10 percent cut in technology spending for the second straight year, from a current budget of $2 million to support some 500 users. David Claver, the motorcycle manufacturer's telecom network administrator, says he doesn't know where the dollars will come from. He's sure the cut will mean elective projects, such as VoIP (voice over IP), will have to be put on hold. It probably also will mean a salary freeze, following a sharp reduction in increases last year. Still, Kawasaki recently installed a new shipping system and upgraded its Novell file server. The company also is in the process of migrating from token ring to switched Ethernet and deploying a new financial package from Cognos.
Claver, who's been with Kawasaki for 15 years, is frustrated. "We're expected to do more in less time," he says. "Everyone wants the project to come in on time with fewer people or the same number of people. And no one wants to say that if this project doesn't get done, it's OK."
Everything is a priority, but nothing gets the resources necessary to do the job, he says.