Most CIOs Unprepared For Digitalization: Gartner

by CXOtoday News Desk    Jan 15, 2014


Most CIOs do not believe they are ready for digitalization, often touted as the “third era of enterprise IT,” says research firm Gartner. A global survey by the research firm shows that over 50% of IT leaders are worried that the digital tsunami is coming faster than expected and 42% believe they do not have the capacity to face the digital future.

Dave Aron, VP and Gartner Fellow notes that 2014 will be a year of significant change if CIOs are to help their organizations remain relevant in an increasingly digital world.

Gartner observes that in the first era of enterprise IT, the focus was on how IT could automate operations to create massive improvements in speed and scale. The second era had been all about planning and doing IT right, being predictable and creating value while maximizing control and minimizing risk. However, to capture digital opportunities created by the third era, that is marked by technological and societal trends, such as mobile, social, cloud, big data and the Internet of Things, CIOs need to deal with speed, innovation and uncertainty.

Aron says in the next one year, businesses – across verticals and geographies – not only have to respond to ongoing needs for efficiency and growth, but also shift to exploit a fundamentally different digital paradigm. Ignoring either of these is not an option.

The survey showed CIOs expect their IT budgets to remain essentially flat this year. This is especially challenging since there is a need to both renovate the core of IT systems and services, and exploit new technology options. Despite this, a quarter have already made significant investments in public cloud, and the majority expect more than half of their company’s business to be running over public cloud in the next 5-6 years. Seventy percent of CIOs plan to change their technology and sourcing relationships over the next two to three years, and many are seeking to partner with small companies and startups.

Moreover, 45% of companies have implemented agile methodologies as part of their development portfolio, although most need to go further to create separate, multidisciplinary teams and new digital skill-sets and alternative sourcing models.

The Gartner report suggests, in order to succeed in this digital world, enterprises should not only exploit new digital opportunities and ensure that the core of IT services is ready, they must have clear digital leadership, strategy and governance, and ensure that all business executives become digitally savvy – and all this have to be done within a tight budget.