4 Digital Transformation Hurdles and How iPaaS Can Help
The race to digital transformation (DX) is really a marathon with no finish line. It is an endless journey, the course of which changes as new technologies and trends continuously emerge. As bad as that might sound, it’s a manageable challenge when you plan for the long haul and think beyond the barriers.
Whether your company was quick off the starting block or slow to begin DX, your path is bound to contain some hurdles. Below we will discuss some of the most common barriers to digital transformation and ways to overcome them.
There are several resource-related issues that can throw a wrench in digital transformation projects. The most obvious is insufficient budget. This can be caused by limited company size or success, or just competing priorities. While DX initiatives require money, there are some technologies that can be used to push them forward without breaking the bank.
Business and IT leaders can be guilty of habitually prescribing the same old solutions to new problems. Often they assume that because a problem is far reaching, that means the solution has to involve a lot of time and money. Fortunately, technological development can help businesses achieve their transformation in faster, more affordable ways.
One example is the development of the integration platform as a service (iPaaS). Using an iPaaS can greatly simplify what used to be complicated undertakings, like integrating multiple cloud applications, microservices, and systems across a business. Employing an iPaaS can speed up important integration work so businesses can accomplish goals like cloud application integration without mega projects and major expenditures.
Business leaders cite a lack of sufficient talent as another roadblock to digital transformation progress. In fact, 50% of senior executives surveyed said lack of digital expertise and skills is a significant barrier to digital success.
While pursuing digital transformation, many businesses continue to operate in a hybrid state. They use both legacy, on-premises systems as well as cloud applications. Therefore, they need to employ specialized personnel that understand the technical aspects of both and how they can work together during DX.
Additionally, this is another opportunity for business leaders to think differently about approaching a problem. While the right digital know-how and technical expertise is essential, there are some ways to decrease the workload placed on your specialized IT groups. Today’s technology allows businesses to empower citizen developers and citizen integrators. These are non-technical personnel who use low-code integration platforms or application platforms sanctioned by IT to create integrations or applications that meet certain business demands. Some low code platforms include iPaaS and application platform as a service (aPaaS). When end users are empowered to complete some of the business’s technical work, business solutions can be delivered sooner and IT gets time back to concentrate on more code-dependent projects.
Legacy systems themselves have been named one of the top barriers to digital transformation. Older, on-premises systems that are tightly woven into an existing business’s fabric can be very difficult to integrate with cloud applications. Since a large part of successful digital transformation is data integration, this presents a problem. Using an iPaaS can help bridge the integration gap between old and new systems, establishing complex connections quickly and easily.
Most modern day business leaders understand the necessity behind digital transformation and claim to be behind the initiative. However, many have concerns about the ROI and might not move as swiftly and decisively as needed because of those concerns.
Additionally, leaders sometimes excel in only one aspect of digital leadership. They could be good at digital strategy, but lacking in management and execution. The reverse is also true. A survey conducted by Harvard Business Review found that only 19 % of companies believe they have both strong digital leadership and strong management. In either scenario, the business is challenged to both plan and execute a digital transformation strategy.
Lastly, leaders sometimes fail to actually lead the charge when it comes to the corporate culture mindset about digital transformation. Because it is such a large and looming issue that affects all aspects of the business, DX needs to become everyone’s job. IT can no longer bear the responsibility alone. This means business leaders need to encourage all parts of the business to contribute to the DX movement. They also need to work with IT to help make that a possibility, allowing IT’s role to change from task completion to task governance. Employing an iPaaS can empower less tech savvy, line-of-business users to complete certain technical tasks, like cloud application integration, thus contributing to the technical workload of DX while taking some of the burden off of IT.
A business’s digital transformation efforts will not succeed unless it’s a company-wide effort. With so many significant hurdles to jump, it will take a corporate village to ensure successful digital transformation keeps running. While iPaaS is certainly not a magic bullet, its ability to democratize and the idea behind that democratization can contribute greatly to the DX endeavor.