Nearly all HK CIOs are embracing the innovation trend

Nearly all HK CIOs are embracing the innovation trendNearly all (96%) Hong Kong CIOs  are pursuing the innovation trend, implementing measures to boost innovation in their company in the next 12 months, a new Robert Half survey suggests.

The company's annual survey of 100 CIOs/CTOs in Hong Kong also shows that when asked to self-evaluate how innovate they think their company is, less than a fifth (13%) give themselves a score of 5 out of 5.

This leaves the majority still believing there is room for improvement, but CIOs overall rate their companies at the upper mid-table of the innovation scale, with an average score of 3.7 out of 5.

According to the survey, the top measures CIOs are taking to build a more innovative business include building data centers to levearge data more efficiently (53%), reshaping network infrastructure to improve operational processes (49%) and employing IT talent with in-demand or unique skills (41%).

But that last measure could prove challenging, with nearly all (98%) Hong Kong CIOs surveyed stating that it is challenging to find skilled IT staff.

Other popular initiatives include developing new technology tools such as apps to improve the customer experience (34%), developing or enhancing software (31%) and focusing on a more collaborative work environment (26%).

“As one of the world’s key commercial hubs, Hong Kong businesses are increasingly adopting innovative methods to drive their company agenda,” Robert Half Hong Kong managing director Adam Johnston said.

“Successfully fostering a culture of innovation calls for ongoing investment in both IT infrastructure and human resources. However, Hong Kong companies face an extremely competitive environment when it comes to attracting high caliber IT professionals, and businesses face a notable shortage of IT talent - particularly those with niche skills.”

Johnson said skilled IT professionals are attracted to those Hong Kong with a reputation for embracing innovation, so companies must send a clear message to the market that they are focused on building an innovative culture.

Other tips for encouraging innovation include ensuring employees feel empowered to speak up and contributing their views, removing barriers to innovation such as legacy technologies and developing the talent capable of leading innovation.