It wasn't that long ago that most senior executives in the financial services industry approached technology as a necessary cost of doing business.However, tech-savvy executives now understand that technology is a crucial component of an effective business strategy. But they're still critically concerned about how to determine the appropriate level of IT investments and making the correct IT decisions.

That's the conclusion of the sixth annual "Technology Issues for Financial Executives" survey conducted by Financial Executives International and Computer Sciences Corp. The survey of 607 financial executives across industries reveals that CFOs believe that technology is more effective at enhancing business efficiency rather than enhancing business effectiveness. Survey results indicate that executives believe that technology and the integration of business processes have provided them with better data, but not necessarily the information or knowledge they need to make strategic business decisions.

In addition, senior executives responding to the survey say they need better and more timely analytical information to assist decision-making, and most plan to invest in these supporting technologies this year. However, only one in 10 say they believe they're getting a high return on their IT investments.

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