WAYNE, Pa., July 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- IT decision-makers (ITDMs) are struggling to keep up with the increased digital demands placed upon them by employees and business leaders, according to research from Sungard Availability Services® (Sungard AS), a leading provider of information availability through managed IT, cloud and recovery services. Some 52 percent of ITDMs feel their organization cannot transform digitally at the speed that management expects, while 54 percent believe the speed of digital transformation is not meeting office workers' expectations. The research, sponsored by Sungard AS and run by IT specialist research agency Vanson Bourne, questioned 700 ITDMs and 1,400 office workers from businesses in the U.S., U.K., France, Ireland and Swedeni.
The speed of digital transformation is crucial, as adopting new and emerging technologies – from cloud-based applications to online collaborative working – allows many businesses to increase productivity, develop new revenue streams and improve communications with internal and external parties. The research highlighted just how high expectations are when it comes to this digital push, with 84 percent of businesses across the U.S. and Western Europe stating that digital adoption is critical in remaining competitive within their industry, with a further 83 percent stating it is vital to improving productivity. The majority of employees made a big push for digital tools, stating these new technologies make their jobs easier (69 percent), and enable them to develop new skills (63 percent).
Failure to keep up with digital demands
However, it seems that expectations are not living up to reality when it comes to adoption, with over a third (37 percent) of office workers believing their company cannot drive digital transformation as fast as their competitors.
Confronted with these new pressures, infrastructure is becoming unpredictable and difficult to manage, having an effect on the whole business, hindering everything from innovation to security. A full 40 percent of ITDMs admit they lack the skills needed to integrate new applications into their existing technology, with this statistic rising to 50 percent in the U.K. Issues regarding security rank as the biggest challenge in Ireland (41 percent), while maintaining availability of systems is one of the biggest challenges for Sweden (38 percent).
Additional challenges around digital transformation center on a lack of understanding, with 47 percent of employees claiming they haven't received the right training. The research also highlights a geographical split around the biggest "soft skill" barrier to digital adoption; respondents from the U.S., Ireland and Sweden state that communicating benefits of digital transformation to senior leadership is their biggest hindrance, while in the U.K. and France, the biggest barrier is understanding the business benefits of digital.
The path forward to digital transformation
"Almost every business states that adopting the latest digital technologies is vital in remaining competitive, and if IT fails to deliver, everything from staff retention and employee productivity to customer engagement and ultimately business growth is at stake," said Keith Tilley, Executive Vice President, Global Sales & Customer Services Management at Sungard Availability Services. "The key is staying in control of your organization's IT and creating the right conditions for it to be predictable and productive, which ultimately drives greater productivity and better business resilience. Right now, all eyes are on the IT department to drive this change, but they don't need to go it alone. Working with the right partner can offer the support needed to generate success and keep the IT bear in check."
The full report is available to download by visiting Tame the Bear.
Sungard Availability Services ("Sungard AS") is a leading provider of critical production and recovery services to global enterprise companies. Sungard AS partners with customers across the globe to understand their business needs and provide production and recovery services tailored to help them achieve their desired business outcomes. Leveraging more than 35 years of experience, Sungard AS designs, builds and runs critical IT services that help customers manage complex IT, adapt quickly and build resiliency and availability.
Sungard Availability Services is a trademark or registered trademark of SunGard Data Systems or its affiliate, used under license. The Sungard Availability Services logo by itself is a trademark or registered trademark of Sungard Availability Services Capital, Inc. or its affiliate. All other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.
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Sungard Availability Services
i Research was conducted by Vanson Bourne, on behalf of Sungard Availability Services, to investigate attitudes toward digital transformation in five countries across the world, focusing on expected benefits, challenges and business demands. Interviews were conducted in May 2016 across two groups of respondents: IT decision makers (ITDMs) and employees from the wider business. The research questioned respondents from businesses of over 500 employees in the U.S., U.K. and France, and respondents from businesses with a minimum of 250 employees in Ireland and Sweden. These businesses operated in a variety of sectors, including financial services, professional services and retail.
Overall, 715 interviews were conducted online and over the telephone with ITDMs, including 205 from the U.S., 153 from the U.K., 156 from France, 101 from Ireland and 100 from Sweden.
At the same time, 1,400 interviews were conducted online and over the telephone with general employees, including 400 from the U.S., 300 from the U.K., 300 from France, 200 from Ireland and 200 from Sweden.
This research defines digital transformation as implementing new and emerging technologies, including cloud-based technologies, digital platforms, website mobile site/applications, social media and customer-facing technology systems, to increase productivity, develop new revenue streams and improve communication with internal and external parties. This can include consolidating or expanding the IT estate to support the deployment of digital solutions.
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