IT in the public sector

IT in the public sector is less well integrated and resourced than in the private sector, according to a survey of 100 UK-based IT professionals from both sides of the divide by research group Vanson Bourne.

The research, sponsored by business technology optimisation software vendor Mercury Interactive, shows that only 34% of those in the public sector think their IT operations are well integrated into core business operations – in sharp contrast to the 70% in the private sector who believe so. However both groups of IT professionals interviewed (around 50 were polled from each side) said they struggle to find the resources needed to provide the IT services promised to the organisation. Just 14% of workers in the public sector thought they had enough resources for the job, compared to 53% in the private sphere.

Related to that were perceptions of project success rates. A lack of senior management buy-in was cited across both sectors as the primary reason for IT project failures, although this time more in the private sector (46%) pointed the finger at senior management than in public sector (34%). The second most-quoted reason for failure in the private sector reason was a lack of project alignment with business goals (27%), while the public sector's second most-mentioned trigger for failure was poor visibility across all current and planned projects (24%).

The dichotomy between the public and private sectors was also reflected in attitudes to salaries and job recognition: an overwhelming 94% of public sector workers believe they are being paid less than their private sector counterparts (given 78% had previously worked for private organisations they do have some insight), while 42% thought they had better job recognition and satisfaction than their private counterparts.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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