Unisys Study: Executives Committed to Digital Business Despite Security Concerns, Execution Challenges
- 72% see a digital business model as critical for success
- 15% view their organizations as nimble enough for full digital business
- 55% of apps are already in the cloud
- 88% cite cloud security as top priority, but only 32% cite significant progress
- 24% cite progress in creating scalable IT for digital business
BLUE BELL, Pa., August 29, 2016 – A recent survey sponsored by Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) shows a strong commitment among executives to adopting a digital business model, with the cloud as the key enabler. However, the study also indicates that security concerns and tepid execution complicate the ability of the executives' organizations to deliver on that commitment.
Conducted for Unisys by IDG Research, the study polled 175 IT and business executives in the United States and Europe on the initiatives their organizations are undertaking to capitalize on the convergence of social, cloud, mobility, data analytics, internet of things (IoT) and security to drive new business models and engage, enable and support an increasingly tech-savvy workforce and customer base.
Nearly three quarters (72 percent) of the respondents agree that it is critical or very important for an organization to modify IT processes and resources to support a digital business model. That represents an increase of 7 percentage points (up from 65 percent) from the response to a similar question in a Unisys-IDG study conducted in October 2015.
The respondents clearly see the value of the cloud as the linchpin in an IT infrastructure that enables digital business: they report that more than half (55 percent) of their organizations' applications are already deployed in a cloud environment.
Moreover, the respondents indicate that their organizations are seeing positive results from initial cloud and digital initiatives, with improvements over the last 12 months in multiple areas, including data security (56 percent), user experience with applications and services (44 percent), IT efficiency (42 percent) and infrastructure performance/availability (41 percent).
However, the executives show greater trepidation about their organizations' ability to build quickly on that initial success. For example, fewer than 1 in 5 (15 percent) of respondents indicate that their organizations currently have the "extremely flexible/nimble" attributes required to implement a digital model that enables them to capitalize fully on future business opportunities.
Gap between Aspiration and Execution Could Impede Progress
Those insufficiently robust capabilities could pose a challenge in areas the respondents see as priorities over the next 12 months. For example, 88 percent cite data security in the cloud as a top priority for competitiveness in the digital world while only 32 percent cite significant progress, creating a gap between aspiration and execution of 56 percentage points.
Similarly, less than a third of respondents report significant progress in other areas key to digital business, from creating scalable/predictable IT environments (24 percent) to gaining a high level of visibility into IT environments (32 percent). These shortfalls may slow progress at a time when it should be accelerating.
On the plus side, the study shows that the respondents who consider their organizations extremely flexible and nimble, and more aggressive in adopting the cloud, more frequently report benefits from use of cloud apps than the aggregate population of respondents.
Nearly three-fifths (59 percent) of respondents who identify their organizations as extremely nimble say they have seen improved data security (vs. 56 percent of those who do not), while 56 percent of the same group say they are seeing improved speed of business decision-making. By contrast, only 18 percent of those who identified their organizations as less nimble have seen improved speed of decision-making. There is also a significant disparity between those reporting improved user experience with applications and services. More than half (52 percent) of the extremely nimble group reports this benefit, while only 38 percent of the less nimble group can say the same.
Respondents in extremely nimble organizations are also more likely to report improved customer experience through integration of infrastructure and applications with IoT.
"This research points the way for organizations to become more nimble and successful in capitalizing on present and future business challenges," said Steve Nunn, vice president, Cloud and Infrastructure Services, Unisys. "Digital business is all about finding innovative ways to empower workers and customers. The organizations that will prosper in the new order are those that most quickly become focused, proficient and flexible in integrating and securing the cloud, IoT and other key digital technologies to drive new levels of service."
Unisys provides a range of cloud-enabled enterprise computing and application services that help clients transform their IT architecture into a software-defined environment that enables digital business. Unisys Stealth® can provide an extra layer of security, using identity-based micro-segmentation techniques and encryption to help organizations mitigate attacks and hacker incidents by rendering devices, data and end users undetectable on networks.
About the Research
IDG Research surveyed 175 IT and business executives in U.S. (125) and Europe (17 UK, 17 Germany and 16 France) on Unisys behalf in June 2016. The executives were affiliated with organizations of 1,000 employees and above.
Unisys is a global information technology company that works with many of the world's largest companies and government organizations to solve their most pressing IT and business challenges. Unisys specializes in providing integrated, leading-edge solutions to clients in government, financial services and commercial markets. With more than 20,000 employees serving clients around the world, Unisys offerings include cloud and infrastructure services, application services, security solutions, and high-end server technology. For more information, visit www.unisys.com.
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