'You just can't keep pace': CIOs deal with spike in software vendors

Some CIOs are struggling to "keep pace" with the huge explosion in outside vendors that has coincided with the hype over artificial intelligence, The Wall Street Journal reported March 4.

Besides AI, CIOs are also sifting through a growing number of digital tools and also looking for smaller vendors so they don't rely so heavily on a handful of big companies, Gartner IT researcher Stephen White told the newspaper.

"You just can't keep pace," Carhartt CIO Katrina Agusti told the Journal. The workwear company's software-as-a-service subscriptions are up to 121 in 2024, compared to 59 five years ago and 20 a decade ago.

Some organizations have been able to shift the other way. Pharma company Moderna started working with a bunch of software firms as it raced to get out a vaccine amid the pandemic, according to the story. "A lot of times my business partners were running crazy fast because they needed something," Moderna CIO Brad Miller told the news outlet. "So they just went and signed licenses and there wasn't really a tech review."

But since spending more time analyzing costs and value, Moderna has decreased its vendors from 257 last year to 200 this year, the newspaper reported.

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