There’s a big gap between business expectations and digital transformation readiness, according to a survey of 1,200 IT executives and IT personnel in six global markets.

The study released by Commvault and Quadrant Strategies, “Measuring IT’s Readiness for Digital Business,” reveals that while many executives recognise the need to be able to lead their companies through digital transformation, IT personnel feel they lack the skillset, technology and bandwidth to create the data-centric foundation required for that digital change and future innovation.

Unmet expectations is one of the reasons Gartner believes digital is heading for the trough of disillusionment.

“The warning signs are very clear: while IT departments are meant to spearhead digital business, they aren’t equipped to do so,” said Afshin Mohamadi, Partner at Quadrant Strategies.

“IT personnel have significant doubts about their abilities to be the agents of change. The lack of skillset, technology, and bandwidth will lead directly to major competitive challenges.”

The results should be viewed in the context of a broader shift in the IT market from an infrastructure-centric to a strategic data-centric approach.

Key findings of the survey include:

  • The Importance of Data – More than 50 per cent of respondents say “better data collection and management” and “new tools to analyse increasingly sophisticated data” as essential to the future success of their business.
  • Lack of Access to Data – More than 60 per cent of respondents, including IT executives and IT personnel, think they have access to less than half of their organisations’ data.
  • Perception Gap– While 41 per cent of executives believe their organisations understand and are prepared for innovation (already a surprisingly low number), only 29 per cent of IT personnel believe the same. Further, over a third of IT personnel think executives would feel concerned, anxious or panicked if they knew more about their IT department, while another 16 per cent said they’d be unhappy, angry or disgusted.
  • Lack of Bandwidth – Most IT executives prioritise day-to-day operations over innovation – and IT personnel follow their lead.
  • Lack of Skillsets – More than 50 percent of IT personnel believe their roles will change radically and they will need to acquire new skills to stay relevant.
  • Lack of Technology More than two-thirds of respondents believe their organisations are not prepared for migrating data to the cloud, protecting that data, or bringing together all data in the company.
  • Lack of Commitment to Putting Vision into Practice – More than 40 per cent of companies don’t yet have a formal, proactive plan for digital transformation.

“This survey was a statistically powerful look at how IT executives and personnel think about digital transformation and the challenges IT departments will face over the coming years. The findings were remarkably consistent across the globe, reinforcing the idea that digital transformation knows no borders,” said Afshin Mohamadi.

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