How digital transformation is redefining the business-IT relationship

How digital transformation is redefining the business-IT relationship

American software analytics company, New Relic, has unveiled its latest research findings How Digital Transformation is Redefining the Business-IT Relationship.

The survey was carried out in the UK, Australia, France, Germany and the UK, targeting 750 global senior IT decision makers of enterprises with 500 to 5000-plus employees. Unlike all the other countries surveyed, the UK’s respondents rang some sharper warning bells on digital transformation:

  • 58% of Brits say digital transformation met expectations
  • 26% say it fell short of expectations.

Technology leadership in the UK were also running up against more resistance and transience than their global counterparts, and British CEOs and CMOs aren’t showing enough support towards digital transformation.

What will drive the next phase of digital transformation?

Global organisations are making significant progress with digital transformation projects with 39% of global respondents saying projects are completed or close to completion with satisfaction levels at over 90%.

According to the survey, progress has been made despite obstacles, however technology leaders are finding that running their digitally transformed organisations is challenging and that they are under increasing pressure to prove ROI:

  • 1-in-2 tech leaders are challenged in managing and monitoring their digitally transformed organisations
  • 50% of respondents admit that their customers more likely to uncover problems before them
  • 89% of the survey respondents believe AI and ML will become important for how organisations run their digital systems.

However, in the UK, respondents have shown stark differences in terms of their attitude towards digital transformation compared to other markets:

  • while 58% of Brits feel that their expectations were met, 26% revealed that the results were not as anticipated; globally this sentiment was shared by only 9%. In total, 74% of respondents have expressed that their digital transformation met or exceeded their expectations
  • 43% face restricted IT budgets, followed by resistance to shutdown/side-lining legacy systems, and 35% report that they do not receive adequate support from non-tech leadership (the global average is 19%)
  • 39% of business leaders in the UK are supportive (compared to an overall 47%). Rather than working as a team to solve problems, British CEOs and CMOs are more likely (47%) to demand answers when something goes wrong in comparison to other countries (40%)
  • US executives are the most likely to request daily reports (54%), compared to the global average of 46%, with UK executives the least likely to request daily reports (31%).

Buddy Brewer, GVP and GM client-side monitoring, New Relic, said: “The next phase of digital transformation will focus on making sense of all the data so that organisations can move faster, make better decisions, and create best-in-class digital experiences.

“As indicated in our research, observing and acting on insights from data collected will play a critical role in helping digitally transformed organisations truly scale and realise the benefits of modern technological advances.”

Digital transformation challenges

The survey states that global organisations claim to be significantly progressing their digital transformation projects, with 39% of global respondents saying these are completed or close to completion. Satisfaction levels are high with 91% of respondents saying results were met and exceeded.

However, respondents said the top five challenges to successfully sustain digital transformation are:

  1. Separate parts of the organisation are moving at different speeds to embrace digital transformation, which holds back collective progress
  2. There is a shortage of skilled employees
  3. Budgets are restricted
  4. There is a lack of understanding and measuring of business benefits
  5. There is a continued resistance to shutting down legacy systems.

More than 50% of respondents to the survey said they find their complex new software and infrastructure hard to manage and monitor for performance issues. 63% said the pressure to respond to business needs means they are having to work longer hours to observe and manage software performance correctly.

79% agreed that the rest of the business has higher expectations in how digital systems perform; with 72% expecting the technology team to deliver increasingly innovative solutions and updates. 48% admitted their end users or customers told them about a problem with digital apps before they knew about it; and a further 46% said they were told about these issues before they knew how to fix them.

1-in-3 respondents reported that they are challenged on business benefit metrics for their digital transformation projects.