Majority of CIOs expect digital transformation to pickup pace in 2020: Study

Customer Experience (CX) will be a top driver to the digital transformation efforts

Majority of CIOs expect digital transformation to pickup pace in 2020: Study - CIO&Leader

More than 90% CIOs say digital transformation will pickup pace in 2020 and Customer Experience (CX) will be a top driver to the digital transformation efforts, according to Flexera’s 2020 CIO Priorities Report.

The report, based on a survey of 302 enterprise Chief Information Officers (CIOs), examines how CIOs are driving change in their IT organizations as they embrace digital business.

“The findings in the 2020 CIO Priorities Report echo changes we’ve made in our own company and have encouraged our customers to follow,” said Jim Ryan, President and CEO of Flexera. “We’re seeing CIOs and IT departments being tasked with leading the digital transformation—from migrating to the cloud or transforming the customer experience—and this demand is only going to increase,” according to the report.

“Today, businesses are required to make fast but well-informed decisions on a daily basis to keep up with the ever-changing tech landscape,” Ryan continued. “Consequently, it’s imperative that IT is involved early on in business-strategy planning, not simply as an implementer of technology, but as an equal partner in the business. The role of equal partner brings with it new challenges for IT and the CIO.”

A few key highlights from the 2020 CIO Priorities Report:

  • Digital transformation impacts CIO priorities

    • More than 90% expect the pace of digital transformation to increase in 2020
    • Customer experience is the top driver of digital transformation efforts with 69% rating it very important, but only 36% consider themselves very mature in this area
    • As a result, CIOs are planning for heavy adoption of cloud (public, private and multi-cloud) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in 2020
  • CIOs face challenges in the shift to digital

    • More than a third of CIOs are very concerned about lock-in with public cloud, leading to multi-cloud strategies
    • Shifting to the cloud is driving 83% of organizations to increase investments in cloud security in 2020, with 47% planning for significant increases
    • With the serious business risks that security breaches pose, 84% plan to increase investments in data protection and privacy
    • As the pace of change increases, 89% cite the lack of quality data as an obstacle to good decision-making
  • IT strategic alignment becomes more critical

    • Supporting the shift to digital and cloud, 36% of the IT budget is now allocated to growth and innovation
    • IT organizations struggle to be equal partners in their relationship with business functions, acting in this strategic capacity only 24% of the time
    • The need for IT to act as an equal partner is critical since 65% of organizations have a heavy or moderate focus on business-led IT
    • Constant change is the norm, with 41% of respondents updating their strategic IT roadmaps at least monthly
  • Staffing changes to support digital transformation

    • Aligned with their critical initiatives, CIOs are looking to supplement skills gaps in cloud, cybersecurity and AI
    • Organizations to fill skills gaps by increasing the use of external partners, prioritizing resources located in North America, India and Western Europe
    • 84% expect to increase investments to upskill existing employees, enabling them to increase their value

The report leveraged a large panel, which comprised 302 global CIOs across industries. The panel is composed of vetted respondents with detailed profiles and is rigorously maintained. The vast majority of respondents are C-suite executives from organizations with a minimum of 2,000 employees.


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