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Study shows corporate boards lack tech savvy

A new survey shows that many corporate boards of directors lack members with technology backgrounds.

A new survey shows that many corporate boards of directors lack members with technology backgrounds.

Despite the fact that there have arguably been more paradigm-shifting IT innovations in the last 10 years than in the previous five decades combined, a recent study suggests that many boards of directors lack either the ability or drive to keep up.

According to the PricewaterhouseCoopers survey, a paltry one percent of board members have any background whatsoever in technology. With so few individuals possessing adequate knowledge in this area – which is not surprising considering the lack of CIOs serving on corporate boards – these companies are missing a valuable voice when it comes to business tech strategies.

What's more, of the 250 IT leaders who participated in the study, 64 percent said the board "doesn't do its homework," while 57 percent said directors rely heavily on the press for their information on current technologies and shaping IT strategy.

Now, considering well-reasoned product reviews is a good idea. However, it cannot be the sole source of information that critical business decisions are made from. For starters, waiting for the press to provide enough details means that companies will be choosing a course of action late in the game.

The best IT support companies will tell you that if you aren't staying ahead of the tech innovation curve, you're likely falling behind it. True IT leaders anticipate coming changes, stay informed about what major players in the industry are working on and regularly evaluate how current systems are performing.

SMB IT support cannot be hamstrung by past strategies and what organizations have always done. Innovative products and cutting-edge comprehensive solutions alter entire industries forever. As a result, the company you have worked for for 10 years could be headed in a completely new direction tomorrow based on a powerful paradigm shift. That's something many boards of directors are not prepared for, but they should be.