Sixty percent of the CEOs surveyed said a major barrier to achieving new growth objectives is limited internal skills, capabilities and leadership. Less than 10 percent rated the ability of their companies to manage change as very successful. "Our ability to realign, reshape and improve our cost structures is limited by a lack of managerial talent in some areas at the top," said one of the survey respondents, whose identity was not disclosed by IBM.Cathy Palaez, chief operating officer of Liberty Travel, offered, "Technology skills are hard to find in the U. S. and are very expensive." Rometty said the results of the survey will be used by IBM "to set priorities for the investments we make." Analytics, dashboards, telematics and RFID are emerging as areas of strong customer interest, she said. She also said IBM will focus its energies on CRM, financial management and supply chain management. Pelander said the study is a more extensive version of one done in Europe by PWCC last year. IBM BCS plans to conduct a study like this every two years, Pelander said. He noted that IBM does a survey of chief financial officers and is considering doing a study of human resources directors.
The dearth of appropriately skilled professionals was underlined by Bill Pence, CEO of the Napster unit of Roxio Inc., of Los Angeles. "In the last 18 to 24 months, it has been much harder to find talent," he said.