According to Gartner, 40% of CIOs plan to invest more budget into technology for customer services in 2018. It’s apparent that a major shift is occurring. By implementing new technologies, organizations can improve efficiencies, enable smarter decision-making, and take greater control of business outcomes. Those who take this ongoing, transformative approach are continuously evaluating their people, processes, and technologies. They’re also taking proactive steps to stay ahead of the curve not only in today’s market but also into the future. According to a Harvard Business Review article, being open to and implementing change “is the way that leaders can rise to the existential challenge of disruptive change to own their future, rather than be disrupted by it.” That’s not to say savvy business leaders jump in blindly without strategic action plans; they are regularly reevaluating their own environments and assessing what is ripe for improvement.
The role of IT in business transformation
Today, IT is being recognized by business leaders as a key contributor to revenue growth and improving customer service. 74% of organizations report technology as being a primary factor in reaching business objectives, while only 2% cite technology as being a non-factor. Industry leading organizations no longer view IT as a cost center but, instead, as a strategic asset for achieving company goals. Those who understand this are leveraging IT to streamline business operations and increase their bottom lines.
To increase IT’s role in business transformation, IT executives must first assess their current IT environment. There’s no denying the benefits technology can offer; however, it can quickly become overwhelming when implemented without any clear direction or in leaps rather than incremental steps. As a starting point, IT executives can assess their companies’ IT maturity using Synoptek’s IT Maturity model. Maturity models are a proven approach for leaders to improve the effectiveness of their organizations. This can help IT and business executives visualize and understand where their companies currently stand in terms of proper processes, skill sets, and even mindsets. It also helps them better understand which potential next steps are most relevant and what those actions will require. Read Synoptek’s whitepaper for more info on how-to use the IT maturity model.
As IT transformation is realized, technical support will cover a wider spectrum of responsibilities. Demand for new technical skills, soft skills, and specialization will change how firms source IT talent.
Easier said than done – Demand for IT talent exceeds current supply
The role of IT is not a separate matter from people. The two go hand-in-hand, needing each other to reach higher levels of business maturity than either could single-handedly. And with the evolving nature of technology and digital transformation, so is the nature of IT skills.
According to CompTIA, 41% of technology firms across the United States report having position openings and are actively recruiting candidates. Among hiring qualified workers, more than half indicate it’s due to growth, while a similar percentage indicate the need for new tech skills in areas such as software development, IoT, or data. IT talent does not stay for long. 38% of firms report replacement hires, which is not surprising during a tech boom economy. IT workers confidence is at an all time high and this is driving many to pursue new opportunities.
Gaps in technology skills can hold a business back from achieving further success. Negative business impacts are also a condition suffered by 94% of organizations of all sizes that lack the IT talent required to keep up. Tops areas influenced by shortcomings in IT skills are: staff productivity (52%), customer service & engagement (38%), and security (32%). Smaller companies report feeling the punch in profitability more so than larger firms (23% vs. 15%).
What can you do?
Many organizations are overcoming the skills gap by seeking third-party help to ensure their people, processes, and technology are efficient, effective, and poised for the future. A Managed Service Provider (MSP) can help you transform your business by providing access to skilled expertise and through strategic IT guidance, planning, implementations, and on-going support.
Furthermore, transforming your business operations by maturing your IT is best supervised by a mentor. Organizations making this journey should seek the assistance of an experienced partner in the early going. A partner like, Synoptek, who has already helped many organizations rise through the levels of the IT Maturity Model and achieve measurable business results. Synoptek can help accelerate the process, transferring valuable knowledge and implementing best practices and the latest technology. Speak with our experts.
About the Author
Synoptek is an established firm that provides information systems consulting and IT management services. Synoptek and its predecessors have been providing these services for 23 years.