State CIOs keeping focus on security, cloud strategy, survey finds

A survey by the National Association of State Chief Information Officers reveals the top 10 priorities of members for the upcoming year.

State IT leaders are keeping their focus on security, cloud strategy and service consolidation, according to a new survey.

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers released the results of its 10th annual survey of the top 10 member priorities for the upcoming year Tuesday, and the top three results remain unchanged from last year. However, the group did vote to add two categories to the list that didn’t appear a year ago.

Once more, members of the trade group ranked “security and risk management,” “cloud services” and “consolidation/optimization” as their top areas of focus, even though 19 new CIOs participated in the survey.

But one of the largest changes to the list came at the fourth spot in the rankings. The CIOs surveyed ranked “business intelligence and data analytics” as an emerging area of focus, as they work on “building expertise, delivering shared services, [and] exploring big data.” Previously, “broadband/wireless connectivity” occupied the fourth slot on the list, but that issue has now dropped off the rankings entirely.


Another new addition to the list from a year ago is the category of “legacy modernization,” which came in fifth overall, as leaders focus on “enhancing, renovating [and] replacing” legacy applications and platforms.

“As we see data analytics and legacy modernization move up the list, you’re seeing a good illustration of how the responsibilities of the state CIO are expanding,” NASCIO President and New Mexico CIO Darryl Ackley said in a release. “Balancing innovation with legacy investments remains a challenge for our states.”

The “enterprise vision and roadmap for IT” category jumped up a spot from the 2014 survey, moving to sixth overall, while “budget and cost control” dropped to seventh after coming in fifth last year.

The area of “human resources and talent management” placed eighth, down from sixth a year ago

Another new addition to the list was the category of “agile and incremental software delivery,” as CIOs take aim at the delivery method that “allows for design modifications, prototyping and addition of new capabilities as part of the development process.”


Finally, “disaster recovery/business continuity” rounds out the top 10, down one spot from the 2014 poll.

Contact the reporter who wrote this story at, or follow him on Twitter at @AlexKomaSNG.

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