Hung LeHong, distinguished VP analyst and Gartner fellow speaking as a member of a panel during the opening keynote address on Monday, 18th October during the virtual Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo 2021, said that the time is now to take risks to capitalize on consumer and regulation shifts.
“At no other time in history have we had this much opportunity to pursue technology-enabled change,” said LeHong. “Just look at what we’ve been handed on a plate: 83% of enterprises say that demand for digital products and services is increasing.”
CIOs are under greater pressure with rapidly increasing interest in digital services, and they must therefore assess their available resources and take on bolder strategies.
Here are three big changes coming to the enterprise, including shifts to the technology playbook, rethinking hybrid models and an end to business-as-usual, according to the Gartner analysts:
1. Hybrid is here to stay – but iteration isn’t over:
While some workers still want to operate from a physical office, and others have no desire to return, “our data shows that the overwhelming majority of your employees want and expect the best of both worlds, an expectation that is forcing CIOs to challenge previous assumptions and implement radical flexibility at scale,” said Mbula Schoen, senior director analyst at Gartner.
“An overwhelming majority of employees prefer hybrid work. This is forcing CIOs to challenge previous assumptions and implement radical flexibility at scale.”
2. Old ways need a shake-up
There are few businesses whose dynamics weren’t altered in some form by the pandemic. And now that the initial, responsive changes have taken place, businesses stand to gain from reimagining the dynamics they hang onto.
Levi’s, a 168-year-old company, embraced trend-setting business practices to weather the pandemic, including a direct-to-consumer model, a remote stylist, and AI-based changes to its global shipping logistics model, said Daryl Plummer, distinguished VP analyst and Gartner fellow.
With higher IT budgets, “CIOs are gaining the nerve and the resources needed to make bold moves in the years ahead,” said Plummer. “CIOs must reach beyond historical insights, legacy business practices and bias to create value.” “You now have the opportunity to be bold. Reach beyond to the unexpected. Reach beyond to the unimagined.”
3. Regulation and digital shifts bring opportunity for IT
“More than ever, changing regulations are a giant invitation card for technology-based transformation,” said LeHong. “But the one thing that is stopping us is tactical thinking.”
Gartner research shows that 41% of employees identify as business technologists, meaning they report outside of IT departments and create technology or analytics capabilities for internal or external business use.
The need for an IT organisation that can respond quickly and appropriately comes from the increased reliance on digital services. This implies that the role of business technologists needs to be re-imagined.
“Getting it right with business technologists is about having the right enabling technologies and the right ways of working.”
“Shadow IT is a dead concept,” said Schoen. “Instead, business technologists lead from the light, they produce results, and their numbers are growing.”