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Archana Venkatraman | March 07, 2019

How Modern ITSM Tools Help Build a Foundation for Your Digital Transformation Strategy

IDC predicts that by 2022, over 60% of global GDP will be digitized, and growth in every industry will be driven by digitally-enhanced offerings, operations and relationships.

It is intriguing to see how some business leaders suffer from a "not in my industry" (NIMI) mentality when it comes to digital transformation. This means that they see disruption in highly-visible sectors such as retail, banking and financial services, automotive, or media and entertainment yet fail to see it in their own industry.

Watch Now: How ITSM Paves the Way for Digital Transformation

IDC's research, Aligning IT Strategies with Business Expectations for Digital Transformation, shows that digital disruptors are everywhere­–from the telecommunications sector to sink manufacturers to garbage collection. IDC identified 370 disruptive organizations across 39 different sectors that are garnering speed and scale, and quickly moving to adjacent industries–think how Uber is diversifying into food delivery or how Netflix is becoming an AI company.

As the global economy realigns around innovation and digital transformation (DX), business and IT leaders need to rapidly undergo technology, process and people transformations to make their place in the digital economy.

risks RISKS
Security, financial, and governance; right processes and lack of visibility
Improving the employee experience, locating/attracting the right skills and talent
process PROCESS
Lack of advanced automation, lack of agile service/app delivery

The First Step Towards Digital Transformation

In order to deliver process and people transformations, companies need a world-class technical foundation that gives knowledge workers and developers­­–who are essentially the architects of the digital future­–access to the right resources at the right time and place.

IDC’s research shows that 60% of CIOs will implement an IT business model and a digital-first culture. This means that business-oriented IT will take centerstage in DX journeys. They will architect a "digital native" IT foundation, bringing IT closer to business, leveraging agile and DevOps practices, plugging into digital innovation communities, and sharpening focus on security, risk management and collaboration.

In a previous blog I argued how, despite this aspiration, less than 6% of organizations have their core IT embedded in digital innovation today, as per IDC's IT Service Management survey.

This is a serious cause for concern because these smaller groups of "trailblazers" are improving their speed to market, innovating faster, and embedding customer feedback right into their development processes as a result of smooth and automated IT and applications management. They are also yielding cost savings and finding it easier to ensure risk and compliance management across the heterogeneous IT environment more manageable.

We are now at a tipping point where more organizations are planning IT modernization, before market forces mandate that. IDC's ITSM research revealed that 88% of respondents see IT as “very important” or “important” to support business transformation. Within this, ITSM transformation emerged as a key consideration to modernize IT processes and improve customer and employee experiences for knowledge workers. Along the way, enterprises also need to rethink their technology, people, process and risk management strategies and assess new KPIs to measure success.

Top Reasons Why Companies Should Focus on ITSM

Empowering employees with highly-satisfying IT services with embedded security guardrails is seen as a differentiator for competitive edge. Capabilities to boost productivity, collaboration, and talent retention were high on the CEO's agenda to build competitive advantage and attract best talent for the business.

What is making business-oriented ITSM architectures attractive to companies:

  • Modern ITSM processes. Leveraging innovation in ITSM industry to provide IT users with fast, simple and digital IT services experience to accelerate the digital transformation journeys.
  • Eliminating Complexities. Ease of use and modern features and functionalities, like drag-and-drop configuration, high scalability, or low-code customization, stood out as the top criterion for investment (74%) as a gateway to free up employee time for strategic tasks.
  • Improved Employee Satisfaction. The ability to provide access to ITSM through role-based micro-apps to improve the user experience was 2nd criterion on the wishlist, with this topping the list for large enterprises (68%).
  • Workforce Empowerment. Advanced self-help, mobility, and self-service capabilities that deliver knowledge in an effective way were also important
  • Bolstering Security, Compliance and Management through Automation. Getting the fundamentals of ITSM automated and running smoothly can pave way for modern methodologies such as DevOps.

ITSM Modernization: A Look into the Future

The next 2-3 years will be crucial where many organizations will break free from the IT hurdles to progress in their digital initiatives by making their ITSM processes more agile. The ITSM study identified the following areas as hot for investment:

  1. Modernizing ITSM to make it DevOps-ready
  2. Improving business process automation, orchestration and management
  3. Leveraging automation to streamline IT services delivery
  4. Reducing ITSM costs and complexities
  5. Improving IT and financial management to optimize use of technology assets
  6. Implementing best practices for governance, security, compliance, such as ITIL
  7. Improving user experience to boost productivity and support innovation–65% of respondents insisted on this!
  8. Improving IT services delivery and meet business expectations from IT
  9. Introducing self-service capabilities to make ITSM user-friendly

The time is ripe to align the necessary elements of people, process, and technology and create a sustainable IT foundation for long-term digital success.



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Archana Venkatraman

Archana Venkatraman is a research manager for global IT research firm IDC’s European Datacenter Research. She covers datacenter technologies including software-defined infrastructures, storage and data management, virtualization, containers, hyperconverged infrastructure, infrastructure performance monitoring, systems management, application development, and cloud services.