The past few years have seen dramatic changes in strategies given the growth of hybrid IT. One of the greatest benefits of the cloud when it first hit the market was the ability to skillfully customize the frameworks in accordance with specific needs. Now hybrid options are taking this to another level.
Virtually every movement in IT infrastructure management has related back to the digitization and automation of core business processes, as well as the enhanced ability to boost accessibility to mission-critical systems and data from a wider range of endpoints. The fact remains that modern IT will only work optimally when all systems have been properly integrated and unified, which can be difficult when companies move toward more novel hybrid frameworks without the right experience and support.
Managed service providers that can offer a range of cloud options and the guidance necessary to properly implement, configure, integrate and manage the infrastructure as a whole will be invaluable for many organizations in the coming years. All signs point toward continued efforts to switch over to hybrid IT and digitize a wider range of business processes and functions throughout departments, and successful endeavors to do so will come back with high returns on investment.
Keeping up with the current trends and those that are right on the horizon is a necessity to maintain relevance in the average marketplace. The first focus should be placed on the prospect of re-planning IT and general operations to ensure that the company's path toward digitization is as efficient and effective as possible.
Tips from the pros
Computerworld recently listed some of the more important strategic matters leaders must reconcile when looking to enact a digital transformation in their operations. It affirms that this should be an entirely objective-centric process. Virtually every company will have unique objectives and specific needs, so a cookie-cutter approach to planning is simply not going to yield the full range of advantages.
As long as decision-makers recognize their own needs and objectives before planning begins for the digital transformation, they will be less likely to experience disruptions. According to Computerworld, it will be helpful to go department by department looking for various opportunities to digitize and improve performances, then work to unify all of them into a centralized strategy that leaves no stone unturned.
Internal and external research will always be necessary in these types of procedures, with the latter involving the gathering of insights and best practices that can be applied to the company's endeavor. Computerworld also addressed that firms need to begin focusing on full-lifecycle management of all digital technologies that are being deployed, rather than only looking at the short-term impacts of these purchases and risking the value of long-term returns.
Organization is key. Because many of the technologies and techniques involved will be somewhat novel to the average IT department today, businesses might want to consider seeking support from managed service providers earlier on in the planning stages of digitization.
The money factor
ZDNet recently reported that the average business is seeing a greater level of IT investments originate from managers outside of the technology department. This has been somewhat of a common theme for a couple of years now, notably in sales, customer services and marketing where chief officers and floor managers alike are demanding access to newer technologies. However, financial discussions must include IT departments.
According to the source, Gartner analysts spoke to the overarching matters that make this a good sign.
"If you ever look at a lot of technology investment it's done in isolation to the business strategy, so it's all about aligning the business strategy with the IT investment," Gartner Business Analyst Principal Tim Coventry told ZDNet. "In actual fact, we're seeing now if you have good business strategy planning in line with technology planning, technology can actually help with business initiatives."
Communication between technology and financial officers, as well as with other decision-makers who are involved in IT purchases, will need to be tight for years to come should companies hope to handle their budgets properly. However, so long as planning and execution are strong and managed services are tapped when necessary for hybrid IT deployments, companies stand to gain significant opportunities for profit growth in the coming years.