Digital Transformation and IT's Changing Role

IT departments are no longer solely in charge of setting their organization's tech strategy, and that's not necessarily a bad thing.

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Digital transformation is shaking the IT's relationship with the rest of the business organization, reveals a new survey from IT services provider SADA Systems.

Less than half (46 percent) of the 350 IT professionals polled by the company said IT should lead their organization's digital transformation, drive adoption and manage training. Forty-four percent of respondents felt that IT should lead their business' digital transformation but leave the implementation to line-of-business units.

"The role of IT in organization-wide digital transformation is definitely shifting, primarily due to budget ownership shifting from IT to line of business. This is actually a good thing as it's brought IT and line of business together," Tony Safoian, CEO of SADA Systems, told Datamation.

Agenda setting and decision making, at least in terms of IT, is now a team effort.

"Now, the parties are partners, collaborators," continued Safoian. "This sharing of responsibility -- with IT in the role of enabler rather than blocker -- sets both parties up for success, and creates an opportunity for CIOs to once again be heroes to their organizations."

Of course, there are some bumps along the way.

A majority of organizations (56%) spent at least a million dollars on digital transformation. Only 18 percent said the funds went toward the change management solutions and activities required to successfully make the transition.

Other challenges included getting non-IT departments to move past their fears of massive change (53 percent) and assisting rank-and-file workers in the use of more modern methods and tools. IT and finance departments had the lowest digital transformation satisfaction rates (23 percent), citing a lack of training (31 percent) and little desire to make the transition to begin with (27 percent).

Twenty-seven percent of respondents sad the process would have gone more smoothly had their organizations prioritized communication between IT staff and their workforces. Others lamented the lack of employee training (22 percent) and inadequate technical support.

None of those hurdles are unsurmountable, however.

Most organizations (93 percent) reported that their digital transformation had been successful. A third of respondents said they started the process 3 to 5 years ago and 37 percent said they kicked things off 1 to 3 years ago. Seventeen percent are playing catch up, having just started in the past year.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.




Tags: IT management, Digital Transformation


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