No matter the industry, you’ll be hard pressed to find any modern business that isn’t investing in digital technology such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, or managed services. But there’s an alarming truth about digital transformation: according to Forbes, 84% of companies are failing to achieve their goals. Some 20% of executives even argue that digital transformation is a huge waste of time.
In the increasingly complicated business technology landscape, it’s easy to do things incorrectly. A lack of strategic guidance and planning is perhaps the most common reason for businesses to fail and end up wasting a huge amount of money. There’s no shortage of hype and fly-by-night trends in the industry either. Some are seduced by the latest innovations, while others choose certain paths simply because “everyone is doing it.”
Following are five of the most common issues derailing digital transformation:
#1. Reliance on legacy systems
Business technology has undergone enormous change over recent years as mobile devices and cloud computing have taken over. Established companies often find themselves left behind with aging in-house data centers that they invested huge amounts of money in.
Given the enormous capital expenses they spent for these technologies, it’s only reasonable that they’re going to be reluctant to give them up. Reliance on legacy systems, particularly highly specialized proprietary technology, is a major barrier to innovation. Often, these systems do not work well with modern solutions, making integration woes a significant pain point.
#2. Lack of change management
Leaders of established businesses are often skeptical of technological innovations. After all, they’ve experienced the whole “here today, gone tomorrow” situation plenty of times before. Rapid technological obsolescence is making it hard to keep up, and it’s a major cause of resistance to change.
When people have built their careers on what they know, they come to enjoy a degree of comfort and familiarity. That’s why every digital transformation should put the needs of the end users first. In other words, it’s not about implementing new technology just because it’s new, but because it delivers value to your business and employees.
#3. Security and compliance concerns
With data being the most valuable commodity on the planet, cybersecurity has become a serious concern for businesses. As companies move their data to the cloud and bring mobile and IoT devices into the workplace, attack surfaces expand exponentially. It doesn’t take long before they lose visibility into their data and become susceptible to devastating cyberattacks. To prevent that from happening, businesses need to place cybersecurity at the forefront of their technology strategies with unified security architectures, threat intelligence, and automation.
#4. Inability to collaborate across silos
Information silos occur in organizations where different branches or departments don’t share information with one another. This lack of collaboration reduces efficiency, productivity, morale and, ultimately, customer and employee satisfaction. It’s a common issue among established companies, some of which still seem to be driven by a 1950s mentality.
Digital transformation requires a high degree of continuity and teamwork. It requires buy-in not only from executive management and other stakeholders, but your employees themselves. It’s a matter of strong leadership as much as it is about technology.
#5. Misaligned business and technology strategies
Much of the above can be easily summed up by the fact that most digital transformation efforts don’t align with the needs of the organization. It’s not about transforming business processes just for the sake of it — it’s about starting with a definition of the challenges your company faces and establishing your goals based on those. Only then should you start looking towards the technology side of things to determine which solutions can help you meet your goals and align with your business needs.
OC-IT helps drive business success through a combination of innovative technology and great customer service. Call us today to schedule a free assessment of your IT infrastructure.
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