While some CIOs are already planning their Office 2010 rollouts within the next 12 months, others are taking a more cautious approach, according to silicon.com’s latest CIO Jury.

Microsoft Office 2010 – which includes the latest versions of Microsoft’s Outlook email platform, Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Access and the SharePoint collaboration technology – was released earlier this year.

However, tight IT budgets and the prevailing business philosophy of ‘make do and mend’ are making it tough for CIOs to justify enterprise-wide software upgrades.

So when silicon.com’s exclusive CIO Jury was asked ‘Are you planning on rolling out Office 2010 in the next 12 months?’ the response was evenly split between those planning the upgrade and those holding back.

Mark Beattie, CIO at LondonWaste, said: “We think it is a stable product that we expect will last us for some time. The training should be less than was required for [Office] 2007.”

Nicholas Bellenberg, IT director at publisher Hachette Filipacchi, said: “We have not investigated 2010 yet, but in fact there was enough good stuff in Office 2007 to make it worthwhile investigating 2010 soon. But, of course, there will be the knock-on requirement for PC upgrades etc etc to factor in, and whatever other unexpected problems with antique spreadsheets etc that get uncovered.”

PowerPoint picture editing in Office 2010

Some of the new functionality in Office 2010: PowerPoint has gained the ability to edit pictures without leaving the application
(Photo credit: Microsoft)

Other CIOs said they had stuck with Office 2003 after deciding to skip Office 2007, but are now evaluating or piloting the new Office 2010 suite, waiting for pressure to build from customers and partners before making the commitment to a full rollout.

For some IT chiefs, however, the lure of Office 2010 is not as strong. Mike Tonkiss, IT director at Neopost, said: “We have no plans at the moment as the functionality in Office 2007 is more than adequate for our requirements.”

And Steve Clarke, systems and operations director at TalkTalk Group, said: “We’re currently standardising on [Office] 2003: it may seem behind the curve, but it’s good and stable and everyone knows how it all works. Maybe when there’s a business justification we’ll move to 2010.”

silicon.com’s sister publication TechRepublic runs a CIO Jury for US-based IT chiefs and recently asked a similar question: ‘is Microsoft Office 2010 a worthwhile upgrade?’ and got a more positive response – eight to four in favour.

Today’s silicon.com CIO Jury was:

  • Alan Bawden, IT and operations director, the JM Group
  • Mark Beattie, CIO, LondonWaste
  • Nicholas Bellenberg, IT director, Hachette Filipacchi
  • Peter Birley, director of IT and business operations, Browne Jacobson LLP
  • Steve Clarke, systems and operations director, TalkTalk Group
  • Adam Gerrard, CIO, Avis Europe
  • Madhushan Gokool, IT manager, Storm Model Management
  • John Keeling, CIO, John Lewis
  • Matthew Oakley, CIO, Schroders
  • Duncan Scott, CIO, Control Risks
  • Richard Storey, head of IT, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
  • Mike Tonkiss, IT director, Neopost

Want to be part of silicon.com’s CIO Jury and have your say on the hot issues for IT departments? If you are a CIO, CTO, IT director or equivalent at a large or small company in the private or public sector and you want to join silicon.com’s CIO Jury pool, or you know an IT chief who should, then drop us a line at editorial@silicon.com