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Digital gap opening up between transformers and slow starters

Digital transformation is happening and those yet to embark on a strategy risk being left behind by competitors

This article can also be found in the Premium Editorial Download: MicroScope: MicroScope: May 2017

The digital transformation trend has given the channel plenty to talk about with customers, most of it positive about change and improved business processes.

But there is a potential danger for those firms that ignore the trend and cloud solution and hybrid IT specialist Ensono has commissioned research carried out by Nimbus Ninety that has revealed a digital gap opening up.

The distance between those companies that have embarked on a transformation strategy and those yet to get their act together is widening.

The market leaders are not out of sight, with only 29% having a digital strategy in place, but the research found that there were several factors holding back more from joining them.

Most of the problems are cultural but resellers looking to unlock some projects could focus on those struggling with legacy technology.

“Although legacy systems are often cited as a barrier to transformation, they are, in fact, an enabler.  Legacy systems need not be replaced to achieve transformation, they need to be factored into the execution. Progressive organisations are building new, transformational solutions in parallel with their legacy systems and slowly switching business operations across," said Simon Ratcliffe, principal consultant at Ensono.

"Legacy IT and modern cloud-based solutions can co-exist and ignite the transformational journey," he added.

The advice for the channel is to start with a clear picture of what technology is already deployed and to build on that. There are also some cultural considerations with leadership problems and a lack of vision as some of the reasons some digital transformation projects fail.

“Technology alone does not drive digital transformation. Digital transformation is only truly effective when an organisation embraces it completely and reshapes the way it thinks and acts. Digital transformation is the perfect opportunity for IT to step up and take control of the strategic agenda but for this to be an effective approach, all parts of the business need to be engaged before any technology is adopted," added Ratcliffe.

The sense that some competitors have already got going with digital transformation should act as a prod to get some more of those yet to formalise a strategy to move slightly quicker.

This was last published in March 2017

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