IT departments struggling to keep pace with growing rate of business change, suggests Claranet research

‘Business as usual’ approach to IT development too slow for modern businesses

Rapidly changing business models are causing businesses to reconsider their approach to IT, as they look to capitalise on the huge opportunity for differentiation through the effective use of technology. However, this is posing real difficulties for IT departments across Europe according to the latest research from managed services provider Claranet. As business leaders across Europe seek to transform their organisations, the incremental ‘business as usual’ approach to IT improvement is increasingly unfit for purpose.

The research, which surveyed 900 IT decision-makers from the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Portugal and the Benelux from a range of mid-market organisations, discovered that 46 per cent of European IT decision makers find supporting fast changing business models a key challenge, up from 35 per cent in 2015. In the UK, the number of IT departments struggling to support a rapidly transitioning business is even higher, with 54 per cent of respondents citing it as a problem.

For Michel Robert, Claranet’s UK managing director, the results highlight the growing imperative for IT departments to embrace more dynamic approaches to keep up with changing business needs:

Our research shows that the IT department needs a fundamental rethink of how it approaches innovation and development. Traditionally, IT departments have incrementally upgraded their capabilities, adding new features sequentially. While this pace of development was acceptable in the past, and often the only pace permitted by infrastructure and software development limitations, it is now no longer agile enough to satisfy the needs of modern businesses.

If IT departments are to empower their organisations, and keep pace with the desired rate of change, they need to adopt more progressive approaches to IT management, focusing on practises which will boost their applications, such as public cloud and DevOps. The flexibility and agility brought by public cloud services enable IT departments to spin up new services which scale on demand, without heavy investments in additional infrastructure. DevOps, meanwhile, can increase the frequency of updates, and speed to market, ensuring the application estate can support changing business conditions.”

Robert concluded:

IT services providers have a central role in supporting their customers in handling this level of significant change. Strong partnerships are able to ease the pressure on IT leaders, giving them the tools they need to respond effectively to the needs of their organisations. Companies should look to partner with services providers who promote an application first approach. This means addressing the hosting, management and development needs of individual applications and prioritising the availability, performance and security of applications which will make the most difference to the business.”

To access the full report, visit: www.claranet.co.uk/research

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