In this year more than any other, CIOs and senior IT leaders find themselves in the spotlight, working to support the business through uncertain times. Along the way, they’re having to ponder many challenging questions; how do they modernise their estates? Should they still push forward with transformation projects or concentrate on trimming costs to keep expenses to a minimum? Do they continue to invest in on premise data systems, or focus in on new architectures and operations in the cloud? What sort of infrastructure do they need to adopt new working models and embrace new Edge computing capabilities?
A new series of CIO.com podcasts, in association with Dell Technologies, VMware and Intel, should help them find some of the answers.
Certainly, CIO priorities are changing. Recent research from IDG shows that IT leaders are looking to modernisation initiatives to enhance their operational efficiency, to build in more agility and help the business shift to new digital business models. Yet while 48% of organisations are spending 10% to 30% of their IT budget on modernisation, those same budgets are flattening or even declining. Approximately 55% of the CIOs and IT leaders IDG surveyed said that competing priorities was the biggest barrier to IT modernisation, with budgetary constraints in second place.
Understandably, businesses are also focusing in on continuity and on ensuring the IT team can support the business as it shifts to a remote workforce and digital business models. Many CIOs have had to cram years of transformation into just a few months, and while they’re waiting for the dust to settle, they’re also looking at where and what to prioritise next. Do they maintain the pace of transformation, or do they pare projects back in the interest of reducing costs? If they do press on with new initiatives, what sort of operating model will prove the most cost-effective and get them faster to ROI?
Crucially, many CIOs understand that continuity and transformation shouldn’t be seen in opposition. If anything, this year has only made it clearer why technology that can drive flexibility and agility can make all the difference. In the words of Gartner senior director analyst, Sandy Shen, it’s been “a wake-up call for organisations that have placed too much focus on daily operational needs at the expense of investing in digital business and long-term resilience.” What’s more, IDG’s research has shown that companies who have modernised their IT, see measurable improvements on cost savings and efficiencies, improvements to uptime and availability and a better quality of service.
And many CIOs are finding that they can reduce costs and support continuity through some kind of hybrid IT state, where infrastructure and applications span on-premise systems and a range of public, private and hybrid clouds. Trends towards Hyperconvergence and software defined infrastructure are now demonstrating that there’s substance beneath the hype; that they can provide the building blocks for a new approach to IT.
This first episode of this podcast series talks to leading technologists and experts from Dell technologies, VMware and Intel to assess the state of IT in the era of uncertainty, to find out how senior IT decision-makers are building resilient, future-ready infrastructures to meet its challenges. From the hybrid IT models to how you tackle legacy tech and technical debt, it provides advice, guidance, and practical tips on how to rethink IT, rebalance costs and modernise for the future.