IT transformation is the process of aligning IT with broader organizational goals. It is just one element of digital transformation, and refers to the ways IT can deliver next-generation solutions to better support the organization's daily technology needs along with high-level business initiatives.
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At a high level, there are three key benefits to IT transformation: strategic, financial, and improved business agility.
Strategic benefits: IT transformation delivers strategic benefits to employees and IT teams alike. When employees have easy access to the technology they need, productivity improves and engagement levels increase, leading to better business outcomes. For IT teams, IT transformation helps streamline management, resulting in more time for strategic initiatives.
Financial benefits: IT transformation is cost-effective in the long run because it helps companies avoid significant capital expenses associated with datacenters and hardware maintenance, frees up personnel resources through automation, and simplifies work for end users so they’re able to be more effective. It can also save on the cost of redundant technology.
Business agility: Over time, IT transformation brings about the speed and flexibility that’s necessary in today’s competitive business landscape. It can mean faster times to market, easier implementation or roll-out of new solutions, and the scalability to drive important business outcomes on-demand. It also means greater flexibility for employees, allowing them to securely work anywhere—whether that’s at the office, on a job site, in a customer’s office, or on the road.
Develop a plan to match IT to business goals: Before launching an IT transformation initiative, organizations should be knowledgeable about the long- and short-term business goals of the organization and its industry, as well as emerging trends in technology. IT should work closely with leadership to understand the unique needs of each department and what they need their technology to do. Next, IT should create a roadmap with timelines and a communication plan to inform staff of changes along the way.
Prioritize employee engagement and experience: To deliver an exceptional experience, IT teams should start by looking at what the organization is asking for and then drill down to employee needs. They should then determine if employees have easy access to the data, apps, and tools they need to be effective, and if work can be simplified by automating routine tasks and streamlining workflows. Adopting an employee-first approach to IT is increasingly important as organizations face greater expectations to improve employee experiences.
Plan for the future: While no one can fully predict the future, building a more flexible infrastructure allows organizations greater agility so they can adapt to whatever the future brings. With careful planning, organizations can implement IT that quickly adapts, scales, and pivots as future business needs arise—enabling organizations to respond more effectively as markets evolve.
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Shifting mindsets: The status quo approach to IT delivery is no longer enough to satisfy the day-to-day business needs of most organizations. The pressure to keep pace with or surpass the competition creates urgency around IT transformation and business innovation: Employees expect technology that’s intuitive and easy to use, while legacy network architectures slow productivity and require a lot of work to update.
By planning for and implementing newer operating models, IT can help organizations meet changing business demands. It can also create an infrastructure to support an adaptive business framework without a major disruption to the organization.
Legacy IT and cloud readiness: Workflows are accelerating to cloud—for a good reason. Cloud offers strategic, financial, and operational flexibility and scalability (see additional benefits above). But datacenters won’t be going away anytime soon. That’s because companies:
Outdated operating models: Along with obsolete technology comes outdated behaviors and practices. When preparing to update IT infrastructures, organizations should also think about the people and processes who will be using the new solutions. Selecting the right technology simplifies implementation and maintenance, and increases the likelihood of user adoption.
The right partner, along with the right technology solutions, can greatly reduce the number of challenges that come with IT transformation. By providing a go-at-your-own-pace solution that supports major initiatives like the journey to the cloud and modernizing security, the right partner can help simplify adoption of new technologies and make IT transformation almost effortless.