CIOs and technology leaders believe their roles are becoming more strategic, but an increasing number believe they have 'lost' control over some technology assets.

That is according to the results of the Harvey Nash CIO Technology Survey, presenting the views of more than 2,000 CIOs and technology leaders across 20 countries.

Some 70% responded they thought their role had become more strategic, while the proportion of companies where more than 10% of technology spend lies outside the control of the IT department has almost doubled to 40% in the last three years.

CIOs also responded their weakest relationship in the business was with the marketing department.

The study revealed that UK CIOs felt more innovative, entrepreneurial and business-facing than they did before the financial crisis, with their environment now requiring them to be more cost-conscious, multi-skilled and diverse.

There are far less in favour of outsourcing, and while 10% of CIOs from the UK host most or all of their core systems in the cloud - some 21% host no services in the cloud.

The survey revealed the concerns of business technology leaders over a global skills shortage. In mobile technologies shortages have grown by 11% in the last year, with a quarter now struggling to find the right talent.

And while 25% cited shortages in Big Data and 19% in social media, the 'classic' technology skills of business analysis (39%), enterprise architecture (39%), technical architecture (35%) and project management (31%) are still the most lacking.

There has also been little progress with workforce diversity programmes; 14% of organisations indicate there are no women in the IT department, and that only 8% of CIOs are women - although this figure was reported as 9% in the UK.