Menu
How IT priorities are shifting during Covid-19 crisis

How IT priorities are shifting during Covid-19 crisis

Survey from AppDynamics indicates the acceleration of digital transformation during the pandemic creates new IT risks

Credit: Dreamstime

Covid-19 has disrupted every business around the globe. IT professionals are under immense pressure to continue overseeing infrastructure, applications, and security in this new normal, where most employees are working from home and services are being accessed exclusively online.

As a result, businesses are accelerating their digital transformation initiatives and turning to real-time data to make smarter decisions.

Covid-19 related IT priority shifts create new technical challenges

Today’s IT departments are facing a number of challenges—from supporting remote workers to managing networks and applications. A whopping 95 per cent of businesses have changed their tech priorities, placing more focus (88 per cent) on improving the digital customer experience.

The findings come from the Agents of Transformation Report, published by AppDynamics, a part of Cisco that provides application performance management (APM) solutions. AppDynamics surveyed IT professionals around the world, including board-level directors, CIOs, and senior to mid-level IT management from various industries.

Digital projects are being done faster than pre-Covid

Due to the pandemic, 66 per cent of businesses uncovered weaknesses in their digital strategies and have since accelerated their initiatives. For 71 per cent of respondents, digital transformation projects were implemented within weeks during Covid-19, compared to months or years under normal circumstances.

AppDynamics isn’t the only company make that observation. Earlier this year, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that the company had seen two years of digital transformation in the first two months of their quarter.

This makes sense as digital initiatives create new ways of working and dealing with customers. For example, most retailers are only able to have customers receive merchandise via curbside pick-up.

This makes the online ordering systems and mobile applications critical to capturing the dollars that customers are spending. The better the apps, and the more digital channels can be used, the more successful a retailer will be.

Digital projects focus on customer experience and employee productivity but resources are lacking

A number of digital initiatives focus on creating new ways of working. This has become increasingly important in the current pandemic era as workers are having to take on bigger workloads.

The majority of IT professionals (81 per cent) said Covid-19 put significant technology strain on their business, with 61 per cent feeling more pressure at work than ever. Almost two thirds (64 per cent) of the respondents found themselves performing tasks they had never done before.

While facing pressure to accelerate their digital initiatives, IT professionals reported not having enough resources and support. Most respondents (80 per cent) said they lack visibility and insight into the performance of their systems.

The respondents cited several problems that prevent them from providing an optimal digital customer experience. This data point shouldn’t be a big surprise as digital initiatives often include components such as the cloud, IoT, mobility, and other technologies that make the infrastructure more complex.

IT’s job was difficult when things were orderly. The chaotic nature of cloud native, distributed systems makes fast troubleshooting difficult, if not impossible.

Web spikes are the biggest challenge

Managing spikes in website traffic was the biggest issue 81 per cent of IT professionals faced during Covid-19, followed by lack of visibility and its impact on customers (80 per cent), and managing mean time to resolution (MTTR) with a remote IT department (79 per cent). I can’t express enough how important it is to get a handle on customer facing systems.

Customer experience is now the top brand differentiator, outpacing price, products, and every other factor. My research shows that in 2019, two-thirds of millennials changed loyalties to a brand because of a single bad experience. That means the 81 per cent of companies having trouble with websites are risking a huge churn of their base.

Also, IT professionals that don’t have accurate data feel they aren’t making informed decisions. In fact, the report found 89 per cent of IT professionals would like to have real-time data at the point of need. Otherwise IT is just throwing darts blind-folded.

For most (92 per cent), having visibility into the performance of the technology stack—from the apps to the IT infrastructure to the network—is necessary to become what AppDynamics calls an “Agent of Transformation.”

These are key people within a business who rely on real-time data and strategic tech partnerships to rise up to the challenges created by Covid-19. They are also the people who will drive innovation as businesses recover from the crisis.

IT pros prefer established vendors and a vigorous vendor selection process

IT professionals (78 per cent) prefer to work with established vendors who provide flexible options during Covid-19. The report’s findings show more than half (66 per cent) of the respondents are accessing free or discounted software, services, support, and training from established vendors.

Going forward, IT professionals want to focus more on app security and disaster recovery, as well as invest in solutions that monitor the digital customer experience. For 79 per cent of those surveyed in the report this means going through a more vigorous vendor selection process.

Overall, 87 per cent IT professionals believe the pandemic was a wake-up call for their business. If digital transformation, real-time data access, and long-term resilience weren’t priorities in the past, they are now at the top of the list.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Featured

Slideshows

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Hundreds of leaders from the New Zealand IT industry gathered at the Hilton in Auckland on 17 November to celebrate the finest female talent in the Kiwi channel and recognise the winners of the Reseller News Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) 2020.

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The leading female front runners of the New Zealand ICT industry joined together for the annual Reseller News Women in ICT Awards event at the Hilton in Auckland, during which hundreds of guests celebrated 13 outstanding individuals who won awards, chosen from more than 50 finalists representing over 30 organisations.

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

More than 500 channel leaders gathered in Auckland on 21 October at the ​Reseller News Innovation Awards ​2020 to celebrate the achievements of the New Zealand technology industry's top partners, start-ups, vendors, distributors and individuals.

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners
Show Comments