IT Execs Struggling with Transition to Digital Business Model
March 02, 2016

Pete Goldin
APMdigest

Share this

IT and business professionals in the US and Europe understand the value of adopting a digital business model but struggle to find the best way to engineer it to deliver the greatest value to employees and customers, according to new research from Unisys Corporation.

The digital business model represents the convergence of social technology, cloud, mobility, data analytics and security to drive new business models and engage, enable and support an increasingly tech-savvy workforce and customer base. The IT infrastructure enabling digital business transformation must be flexible and scalable on demand.

The 188 respondents to the survey – conducted for Unisys by IDG Research – appreciate that digital business transformation provides the key to elevating levels of service to those demanding internal and external constituencies: 55 percent cite that service requirement as their key challenge for 2016.

In addition, nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of respondents consider it highly important for their organizations to modify technology, IT processes or IT resources over the next 12 months to implement digital business, focusing especially on five key priority areas: mobile application development, cloud deployment, social media, data analytics and security.

Yet 54 percent assess their organization's progress toward a digital-business model that delivers on user expectations as average or below average (32 and 22 percent, respectively), while 45 percent rate progress above average.

In addition, less than 20 percent of respondents who rate each of the five IT focus areas as critical or high priority for digital-business implementation report significant progress in any one area. Few indicate that their organization is ready to meet customer expectations over the next 12 months: only 41 percent indicate that their technology or infrastructure is prepared, while 40 percent and 39 percent, respectively, rate their IT skill sets and security/compliance strategies as adequate.

Respondents who consider each of the 5 IT initiatives as at least a moderate priority report the greatest progress in two key areas: 69 percent cite at least some progress in both mobile application development and cloud deployment, but cite less significant progress in social media, data analytics and security.

Making Progress

"Digital business can be a powerful force for enhanced productivity and competitive differentiation in a crowded marketplace," said Dan Huberty, VP, Vision, Strategy and Enterprise Architecture, Unisys. "However, the window for seizing the initiative is rapidly narrowing. Smart IT organizations must take steps now to implement a concerted digital-business strategy and infrastructure or risk missing a golden opportunity for innovation and growth."

Many respondents to the survey indicate that their organizations are making progress in areas crucial for delivering the benefits of digital business. For example, a third (34 percent) of respondents say that their organizations are struggling to deliver improved end-user and customer experiences, but 70 percent indicate that they are delivering persona-based service to support internal IT users (and another 15 percent of respondents would like to do so).

Persona-based services are personalized to the job or service requirements of a specific role, extending to internal users the principles of customer relationship management (CRM) that normally apply to external customers. The digital business model is a natural vehicle for CRM and other applications that rely on unified delivery of personalized, integrated information from multiple sources.

Digital businesses perform best when they transform into software-defined enterprises in which key enabling technologies are based on and connected through software to enable greater flexibility and scalability at lower cost than hardware-heavy data centers – the traditional hubs of enterprise IT. Service management for personalized delivery of vital productivity services and service integration and management for cost-efficient coordination of multiple external service providers are key to the success of the software-defined digital business.

Survey Methodology: IDG Research conducted the survey on Unisys' behalf in September and October 2015. The results are based on responses from 188 IT directors and vice-presidents in non-IT roles working for international organizations with 500-plus employees and US organizations of 1,000-plus employees. The respondents were based in the US, UK and Germany.

Share this

The Latest

September 22, 2017

UK businesses have attained high levels of business-IT alignment in of all sizes, with IT pros demonstrating strong business understanding and business pros exhibiting strong IT knowledge to increase business performance, according to a new survey by ManageEngine ...

September 21, 2017

The increased complexity of new computing architectures coupled with new application development methodologies – especially in the face of time-to-market and security threat pressures – should make secure UX the first strategic decision for CEOs and CFOs on the path to digital transformation ...

September 19, 2017

IT professionals tend to go above and beyond the scope of their core responsibilities as the changing business landscape demands more of their attention, both inside and outside of the office, according to the Little-Known Facts survey conducted by SolarWinds in honor of IT Professionals Day ...

September 18, 2017

Digital video consumption is viral and, according to a new study released by IBM and International Broadcasting Convention (IBC), more than half of the 21,000 consumers surveyed are using mobiles every day to watch streaming videos, and that number is expected to grow 45 percent in the next three years ...

September 15, 2017

No technology that touches more than one IT stakeholder, no matter how good and how transformative, can deliver its potential without attention to leadership, process considerations and dialog. In this blog, I'd like to share effective strategies for AIA adoption ...

September 14, 2017

Enterprise IT environments are becoming more heterogeneous and complex, with fragmentation permeating cloud infrastructure, tooling and culture, according to a survey recently conducted by IOD Cloud Technologies Research in partnership with Cloudify ...

September 12, 2017

One area that enables enterprises to reduce complexity and streamline operations is their virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). Virtualization is a linchpin of digital transformation and effectively optimizing an enterprise's VDI is essential to moving forward with digital technologies. Delivering the best possible VDI performance means taking a fresh look at what "desktop" means today. The endpoint, or desktop, now can be a physical thin client, a software-defined thin client, a traditional laptop, a phone or tablet. To reduce operational waste and achieve better performance across the desktop environment, consider these five actions ...

September 11, 2017

In incident management, we often overlook the simple things in favor of trying to do too much, too soon. Why not make sure we've done the fundamentals properly? ...

September 08, 2017
For our Advanced IT Analytics (AIA) Buyer's Guide, we interviewed more than 20 deployments to help us better assess vendor strengths and limitations. So given the abundance of riches to work with, I've decided to illustrate several of the more prominent AIA benefit categories with actual real-world comments ...
September 07, 2017

The Input/Output Operations per Second (I/O) capabilities of modern computer systems are truly a modern wonder. Yet no matter how powerful the processors, no matter how many cores, how perfectly formed the bus architecture, or how many flash modules are added, somehow it never seems to be enough ...