Keeping pace with the status quo may have sufficed in pre-pandemic times; however, now employees and customers alike are demanding more digital solutions from employers and businesses. Meeting these demands and sidestepping COVID-19 obstacles requires creativity. As budgets shrink and some workforces are dispersing for good, organizations must think differently to deliver tech innovations that do not break the bank.
A new executive brief titled “How CIOs are Freeing Up Budgets to Fund Innovation in a Post-Pandemic World” compiles the findings of two VMware-commissioned surveys and analyses: “MIT Executive Study Uncovers Top 10 Trends Shaping IT Resilience” and Forrester Consulting’s “To Recover from the Pandemic, Automate Operations to Free Budget for Innovation.”
Here are a few highlights from the new executive report.
Budgets Remain Tight
Before the pandemic, 48% of executives said that reducing costs was a top priority. Now, that percentage has jumped to 72%. To make matters more complicated, 55% expect their IT budgets to decrease within the year.
The solution tech leaders are using to find the budget for innovation is automation. Automation should no longer be viewed as an experiment, but as a cornerstone to your IT infrastructure. Achieving automation requires removing expensive legacy infrastructure. Legacy infrastructure requires capital and operating expenses, and its inflexibility and complexity ill-prepares it for the future of work.
Reaching a Consensus Is More Difficult
IT leaders must present a strong case for each innovative technology proposal to free up funding in constricted budgets and convince money-conscious executives of the new tech’s worth. One new challenge in tech innovation is reaching a consensus among business leaders.
Fifty-six percent of executives noted, “aligning strategy across multiple departments and teams” and 50% marked “securing buy-in across business leadership” as two of the most challenging obstacles put in their way by COVID-19 in software application improvement.
The current climate is making tech decisions a much bigger deal than they were before. That is because they have a wider impact on the organization. Sixty-seven percent of executives canceled projects that do not have an immediate benefit to their business. Tech projects are being rejected by senior leaders because they are perceived to be insignificant to the business as a whole.
Organizations Must Fulfill Digital Demands
Employees and customers require more care and attention than ever. Digital demands are growing, as COVID-19 has limited people’s communication, purchasing, and work to digital channels. As a result, a positive user experience on these channels is incredibly important. Cumbersome, legacy tech can be frustrating, and innovative tech solutions are key to supporting employees, intriguing customers, and demonstrating to each group that the organization cares about their digital experience.
Automation & Innovative Technology Are the Solutions
The executive brief also presents suggestions on how to overcome tech funding challenges. Automation and freeing funds to support innovative technology are at the heart of each solution. Innovative technology is absolutely worth the investment now, as it prepares organizations to be agile in the future. Plus, it will help overcome revenue losses by reducing CapEx and OpEx.
Analyze and measure the impact of (or lack thereof) current applications to then address where to invest to support your distributed workforce for the long term. A solid tech infrastructure, real-time information sharing, digital workspaces, and a comprehensive security plan will prepare your organization to draw from a larger talent pool and will ensure productivity amid future disruptions.
The future of work was already on the horizon; COVID-19 only sped up its arrival. The key to surpassing innovation funding challenges is to be creative in how you welcome change. What you achieve in the future is built upon the change you face today.
Download “How CIOs are Freeing Up Budgets to Fund Innovation in a Post-Pandemic World” for a complete breakdown of innovation funding challenges and the solutions you may want to consider.