While the advantages of digital transformation might differ from business to business, the large-scale benefits are well known: Operational efficiencies that cut costs, top-line growth and a better customer experience are just a few of those mentioned in “The Digital Transformation Insight Report” by CDW.
But digital transformation is no walk in the park. In fact, according to a November 2018 survey by IDG, more than 50 percent of companies polled have abandoned IT transformation projects.
“To address these challenges and turn the promise of digital transformation into reality, organizations need to think big, act small, and move fast,” explains Link Simpson, senior manager of digital transformation and IoT at CDW, in the report. “This means identifying where they want to go from the get-go, determining how big the gap is between their current technology and big vision, picking a starting point everyone can get behind, and then moving ahead aggressively to prove the value of their first solution and realize their first results in the near term.”
Companies face a variety of challenges, and the first step to overcoming them is understanding them. What are the most common hurdles? IDG’s 2018 State of Digital Business Transformation report lays out four:
4 Common Barriers to IT Transformation
1. Cost: Large IT investments can be expensive, and 31 percent of organizations cite a lack of resources as one of the greatest inhibitors of their digital transformation progress. However, well-planned digital transformation efforts can result in financial savings, which organizations can use to fund future purchases. Forty-eight percent of organizations reapply cost savings for digital transformation investments.
2. Security: Security is also cited by 31 percent of organizations as one of their digital transformation challenges. In particular, businesses create new endpoints — and, potentially, new vulnerabilities — when they deploy IoT sensors and systems at the edge of their networks.
3. Staffing: At many organizations, in-house IT staffers lack the time or experience necessary to orchestrate digital transformation initiatives. Twenty-nine percent of organizations list time-consuming data migration as a major barrier, while 28 percent say integrating legacy systems with new applications is a challenge.
4. Culture: Digital transformation requires organizations to break down silos and embrace a culture that encourages risk taking. Twenty-one percent of organizations cite siloed operations as a hindrance to digital transformation.