Strategy

The challenges facing IT in tech-centric business environment

By Insight
Strategy
Published: 9 February 2018

A new survey[1] has found a major change in the role that IT is playing in business: 85% of the IT professionals surveyed noted that their executives view the organisation as an IT company at heart. This finding inspired Insight to field the follow-on study, the 2018 Intelligent Technology Pulse, a survey of 104 IT executives (“CIO/CTO”) and 105 procurement professionals (“Procurement”), to better understand how this evolution has affected IT at enterprise-level companies.
 
“This change has been taking shape over years but now is fully underway. Technology has enabled forward-thinking companies to compete more effectively for decades. However, this survey clearly demonstrates that technology has evolved beyond an ‘enabler’ and that every company is effectively a tech company today,” said Steve Dodenhoff, President, Insight U.S.
 
Mike Gaumond, SVP, global business transformation at Insight, added: “Today, technology is embedded in the actual products and services a company delivers. It is transforming how businesses engage their customers and fueling the tech-savvy workforce. Simply managing day-to-day IT challenges isn’t enough; companies must innovate to differentiate themselves in the market.”
 
As evidence that IT has become integrated throughout organisations, CIO/CTO and Procurement respondents are aligned in several key areas:

  • Supply chain optimisation: 81% of CIO/CTO and 79% of Procurement agree that supply chain optimisation is a pain point. With IT budgets and time going to maintaining current infrastructure, while being tasked to help grow the business, IT must be able to maximizse resources. Yet 23% of IT decision makers perceive budget to be a top challenge.
  • Connected workforce: 77% of CIO/CTO and 57% of Procurement agree that adapting to a more connected workforce is a pain point. As shifting demographics, new technologies and changing social norms are transforming the way people work, IT has been challenged by the task of supporting this transformation by integrating technologies that will help attract and retain talent and create a more productive workforce.
  • Cloud and data centre transformation: 77% of CIO/CTO and 66% of Procurement agree that managing complex workloads is a pain point. Data has the potential to transform businesses, but turning that potential into reality is difficult. To truly create a platform strategy that supports the business, clients need to be able to access, process and manage data securely and efficiently at all times and from anywhere.
  • Digital innovation: 69% of CIO/CTO and 68% of Procurement agree that developing data-driven insights and strong technology to create great, differentiating experiences for customers and employees is a pain point for their organisation. Creating a continuous experience where people, things and businesses are interacting, where physical and digital lines are blurred and where analytics from multi-touchpoints creates an immersive advantage.

 
Security keeps a lot of people up at night, prompting service-based solutions to take on increasing importance:

  • While security is certainly not a new challenge, it continues to grow in importance as businesses become more and more dependent on IT solutions. Over half (60%) of CIO/CTO and 49% of Procurement report that security is among their top three challenges, while one-third of CIO/CTO and one-quarter of Procurement say it is their number one challenge.
  • 23% of CIO/CTO and 19% of Procurement agree that service-based solutions — defined as cloud computing resources, like software as a service (SaaS) or device as a service (DaaS) hosted by a third-party and made available to customers via any device with an Internet connection and web browser — should receive the most budget moving forward.

 
“Business is technology, and technology means change. You really need IT influencers with a long-term focus and architecture working in advance of change,” said Mike Guggemos, chief information officer, Insight Enterprises. “While operations manage for today, a proactive IT mindset applies solutions to ensure an organisation is positioned for success three, five, seven years down the road.”

[1] The Intelligent Technology Index is a survey conducted on behalf of Insight among a random sample of 401 IT professionals with decision-making responsibilities