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CIOs Are Change Agents for a More Collaborative, Virtual Workplace: Survey by Economist Intelligence Unit
Cognizant-Sponsored Survey Finds Nearly 75 Percent of Global Organizations Will Increase Innovation, Competitiveness and Productivity Within Three Years by Enabling Virtualization

TEANECK, N.J., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Cognizant (Nasdaq: CTSH), a leading provider of consulting, technology, and business process outsourcing services, announced today the results of a research report, "Next-Generation CIOs: Change Agents for the Global Virtual Workplace." The Economist Intelligence Unit conducted the research across Europe and North America and wrote the report, in cooperation with the Cognizant Business Consulting practice.

The report reveals the CIO's role in restructuring how work is done throughout the organization.  Among the more than 400 survey respondents, mostly CIO, CEO, vice president, and director-level, those who are moving toward more virtual, collaborative teams are benefitting from increased innovation, more effective talent recruitment and retention, and higher productivity. One in six said their companies are already seeing these results, and another one-fifth expect to garner benefits within a year.

"Business leaders today are exploring new ways of working in response to disruptive industry changes – globalization, new collaborative methods and technologies, and a rising tech-savvy generation of employees and consumers. The virtualization of people, processes, and technologies is resulting in faster time to market while unleashing innovation," said Malcolm Frank, Senior Vice President, Strategy, Cognizant.

"Working with global knowledge-based companies, we witness first-hand how virtual teams are more likely to take hold when the CIO is engaged in the process. CIOs have the clout and the top-to-bottom perspective to enable business process change, weaving together collaborative business processes and platforms often based on cloud, social and mobile technologies to make work more productive and cost-effective," said Mark Livingston, Senior Vice President, Cognizant Business Consulting.

The CIO should spearhead the transformation to a more virtualized workplace, according to 45 percent of respondents. Only CEOs ranked higher, with 47 percent, indicating the CIO is a strategic enabler who, alongside the CEO, can align IT capabilities with business needs.

Key findings include:

  • Virtual team structures are fostering more productive relationships with internal and external partners.
  • Organizations that have embraced virtual teams benefit from increased innovation and competitiveness, but often lack methods to measure the quantitative impact on the bottom line.
  • CIOs have a unique enterprise-wide perspective and are familiar with the people, tools, technologies, and techniques needed to create a corporate culture of virtual teams.

The full report on the survey, "Next-Generation CIOs: Change Agents for the Global Virtual Workplace," is available at

About the survey

A total of 402 respondents in Europe (52 percent) and North America (48 percent) participated in the survey, conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit in May 2010. Forty-five percent of respondents hold C-suite or equivalent positions, and another 29 percent are senior vice presidents, vice presidents or directors. The remaining 26% are managers, department or business unit heads, and "other" titles.

Most of the organizations surveyed have global operations. Thirty-eight percent are small to medium-sized companies, with less than $500 million in annual revenue. Another 19 percent report $500 million to $5 billion in annual revenue, and 33 percent exceed $5 billion in annual revenue.

Forty-six percent of respondents have IT responsibility. The survey sought to explore differences in perspectives between IT and non-IT functions, but found considerable alignment between the two. Strategy and business development, and general management were the other main functional categories, with 13 percent in each. The remaining 28 percent fulfill a range of functions.

About the Economist Intelligence Unit

The Economist Intelligence Unit is the business-to-business arm of The Economist Group, which publishes The Economist newspaper. As the world's leading provider of country and business intelligence, the Economist Intelligence Unit helps executives make better decisions by providing timely, reliable and impartial analysis on worldwide market trends and business strategies. More information about the Economist Intelligence Unit can be found at or follow us on

About Cognizant

Cognizant (NASDAQ: CTSH) is a leading provider of information technology, consulting, and business process outsourcing services. Cognizant's single-minded passion is to dedicate our global technology and innovation know-how, our industry expertise and worldwide resources to working together with clients to make their businesses stronger. With over 50 global delivery centers and approximately 88,700 employees as of June 30, 2010, we combine a unique global delivery model infused with a distinct culture of customer satisfaction. A member of the NASDAQ-100 Index and S&P 500 Index, Cognizant is a Forbes Global 2000 company and a member of the Fortune 1000 and is ranked among the top information technology companies in BusinessWeek's Hot Growth and Top 50 Performers listings. Visit us online at or follow us on

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes statements which may constitute forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the accuracy of which are necessarily subject to risks, uncertainties, and assumptions as to future events that may not prove to be accurate. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied include general economic conditions and the factors discussed in our most recent Form 10-K and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Cognizant undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

SOURCE Cognizant


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