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Are New Technologies a Threat, or the Biggest Opportunity?

As I meet with customers and prospects across the nation, insights I learn from CEOs, CIOs and CTOs, about what keeps them up at night is incredibly valuable. Whether talking to a customer in New York or in Dallas, all share concerns about the future & the role emerging technologies will play in transforming their business.

This is directly related to the changing role of the CIO – how they are now seen as not only the person who is keeping the technology running, but as a key player in deciphering emerging technologies & identifying which innovation projects will help propel them forward so they can disrupt before being disrupted.

And the CIOs know that technology is a moving target. As an example, building modern applications typically involves many different coding languages and development frameworks. Just look at the sheer number of JavaScript-based frameworks that are available—there are well over 80 now—each of which is evolving independently, resulting in potential compatibility issues. Plus, the framework you select today could fall out of favor tomorrow. For example, AngularJS, ReactJS, and Backbone are currently hot, but will they be prevalent in a year or two? How can a CIO disrupt before being disrupted in situations like this? The answer is anyone’s guess. The bottom line is, building future-proof applications is no small feat.

CIOs are facing multiple challenges which are keeping them up at night. Some IT organizations have more work than their IT teams can deliver. When I am talking to CIOs and CTOs, they are reporting that they have a significant backlog of mobile apps. In some cases, they have dozen apps or more waiting to be developed. And we know what that means – business waiting for solutions and customers having a not too pleasant experience.

As a matter of fact, when talking to C-suite execs, they express the need to focus on activities that consume a substantial portion of their budget, leaving little left for innovation that could help them to disrupt instead of  being disrupted.

An inflexible back-office system not only uses too many resources and too much budget, but it is also hard to integrate or adapt in ways needed to support new digital initiatives. So, a slow development method associated with legacy systems makes a tough situation worse. Can a CIO or CTO disrupt in this environment? Probably not.

New technologies are the foundation of digital initiatives that disrupt other business. However digital initiatives require specific technical skills. Since many organizations don’t have them, their choices are to invest heavily in training, recruit necessary these skills, or plug gaps with outsourcing. Unfortunately, with developers costing a lot, these options are expensive, time consuming, or both.

Digital transformation is hard because it involves genuine innovation and a different mindset. Processes, business models, and service offerings are all likely to be new. Adoption by customers and partners is unpredictable. Simply put, this is a million miles from the comparable safety of incremental and linear business improvement. Embracing such uncertainty is often hard for IT organizations. New methods are needed throughout the entire development lifecycle. Risk-averse, business-case prioritization is out.

However, a lot of companies are still falling behind and feel new technologies are a threat. And c-suite execs are missing the biggest opportunity to disrupt business and exceed company results with budget optimization, allocation of resources, agility and flexibility, on top of time to market with innovation.

During my conversation with c-suite execs across several industries I found that:

  • 50% of business leaders don’t think automated systems will free-up their time; they feel this will threat their organizations
  • Almost 60% don’t agree that offloading tasks to machine automation can happen without them losing control of the operation. They will continue to do time-consuming tasks that could easily be automated, at the expense of saving valuable time for higher order pursuits that focus on creativity, education and strategy.

Also, when talking to the c-suite execs, most understand the importance of leading with technology. And no one in any given organization knows as much about technology as the CIO. It is through innovative use of technology, namely software, that startups are disrupting established companies. A technologist to the bone, the CIO not only knows which technologies can be used to attack the company’s position, but can also play a leadership role in identifying how the company can use technology to pre-empt disruption or to move the goalposts to their advantage.

There is a tendency when talking about technology to be totally binary or metrics focused, but a key success factor in any organization’s transformation is their people. The CIO needs to balance driving change at the right speed, without going too fast and losing valuable resources along the way. The CIO needs to set the tone and clearly explain why change is necessary and what it will mean to the organization. In my conversation, what I got from those that successfully implemented innovative technologies to drive digital transformation, is that securing employee buy-in on a company’s digital transformation vision and values is absolutely crucial to its success.

And the last piece here is to choose the right tools to manage the digital transformation. And here it is — GeneXus. We’ve had the privilege of working with clients and developers around the world for over 30 years.  Our technologies empower the enterprise to do more than ever before.

Genexus was the first company to release the first intelligent tool for creating and maintaining software, automatically.

We do this by automating everything that can be automated so that people can be free to create (not code) software solutions easily and quickly. Simply put, our mission is to help people create better applications, the easiest way possible, and we have the best team to help customers do this.

To learn more about Genexus please visit www.genexususa.com or contact me directly at 1 201-603-2022. Please feel download our free trial version to check the power of AI creating apps faster.


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