Over half of IT directors in the UK are missing out on big decisions because they do not have a seat in the boardroom, according to research commissioned by Microsoft.

The lack of boardroom representation is stark given the effect IT has on businesses' performance, according to research. The importance of being able to raise IT issues at strategic meetings could have a clear benefit on how well businesses functioned, respondents said.

Two hundred IT directors were questioned, with half working for businesses of 500 to 999 employees and half from larger enterprises of over 1,000 staff. The project was conducted by research firm Loudhouse on behalf of Microsoft.

Matthew Dunstan, application group platform manager at Microsoft, said that applications held companies together. "If people aren't factoring this into the company at board level, these 'business bridges' are doomed to collapse." Eight in ten of those interviewed acknowledged that application performance problems directly hindered their business.

Other recent research has also highlighted that many businesses are failing to properly monitor the effects of IT investment in key technology projects.