Overall IT spending among U.S. insurers in 2005 will be $28.8 billion, accounting for a little less than 3% of total net written premiums, and will grow to $42 billion by 2010, according to reports from Boston-based Celent LLC.How are IT departments going to manage that spending? What software will they buy? Which software should they toss or keep? What kind of return are they getting? Insurance executives want to know answers to these questions in their own companies.

According to a report, "Optimizing the IT Portfolio for Maximum Business Value," from Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research Inc., "Boards of directors and executive management (in an array of industries) want to know how decisions are made, how funds are allocated and what the actual returns and benefits are of their IT spending."

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