June 6, 2023

Article by  OutSystems APAC vice president Mark Weaser.

It is commonly accepted that companies pivoted rapidly as the pandemic rolled across the globe and, in most cases, accelerated their digital plans. At first, this was an effort to cope with the ‘unknown’ – would this technology budget still be available next year if we don’t spend it now? However, that stance evolved rapidly since the world responded to an increase in demand for digital services and online shopping. Consumer demand with regard to seamless, efficient online solutions increased as well, with research suggesting as many as 18% of customers walk away from a sale if they don’t receive a fast, smooth transaction.

Over and above a friendly and efficient interface, this requires back-end systems to work smoothly, data transfers to be seamless, and information to flow unimpeded throughout departments. Legacy systems need to become integrated with more modern ones, utilising data better throughout an organisation. Applications need to be tweaked and optimised. Services need to be adjusted, plus new offerings brought on the internet faster to respond to market forces.

Indeed, according to the study by IDC, 28% of organisations in the particular Asia Pacific region are in the last stage of digital transformation maturity, up from 18% of companies in 2019, pre-COVID.

With this rapid change, however, comes a new set of challenges.

Below are five technology difficulties that will help highlight potential pain points and suggest how to circumvent or overcome them on the path to a smooth digital change.

The timing conundrum

The particular majority associated with digital modification projects are usually created using custom code, but developing it will be difficult, costly and time-consuming. Many projects end in failure or take far longer to implement than planned. As consumer demand regarding personalised experiences rises, businesses subsequently struggle to keep up by writing vast amounts of program code. At the same time, cyber attacks plus malicious activity are on the rise. Developers need to guard against these factors at the same time as managing and maintaining the particular code they’ve written plus keeping on top of demand intended for updated providers. This all leaves very little time to get actually coding and creating new products and services.

Talent shortages

Companies are also facing a real, pronounced shortage of developer talent. As the Speed associated with Change: How Fast Are You report showed, no matter the electronic and agility maturity levels, most companies are affected by skill shortages and talent gaps. However , according to Hays, IT project management is the skill within greatest demand within Sydney, followed simply by software development. Hays states: “Significant need exists pertaining to Software Designers as organisations look to improve their customer facing digital channels”.

As such, the Australian Government has developed a Skills Priority List detailing which professions are most at risk of talent shortages. Software advancement ranks as an area of concern, because does website design and many associated fields. A recent report by Alpha Beta goes one step further, suggesting that will Australia needs to find 6. 5 million new digital workers by 2025.

Avoiding technology silos is critical

Many companies have to deal with the fragmented THIS landscape. Over time, numerous duplicated applications build up, sometimes making use of non-standard architecture and poor security practices.

It is usually important in order to look at these types of as part of a digital alteration initiative and look to redevelop or integrate them – with little to no interruption to underlying business processes. Therefore it is important in order to find tools that can bridge the gap between business demands and available IT resources. Rapid application development is a big asset in these instances.

The ACT Revenue Office in Canberra underwent such a transformation in recent times and – deploying this type of platform – managed to eliminate 90, 000 annual paper notices, reduce external emails from 60, 000 to 20, 000 annually, and reduce the time taken to process refunds by 90%.

However, companies often start small – picking digital transformation projects focusing on areas such as ‘improvement of customer experience’, which require a specialised tool. Then, another team starts thinking about the back-end project and opts for a different specialised device. This is followed by yet another team deciding to create operational dashboards and choosing another specialised tool.

With all manner of different tools for different functions, the particular overall functionality is compromised, with potentially useful solutions becoming entrenched in independent silos. Choosing a more robust technology in order to handle the different business initiatives from the start would have instead created a system of synergy plus cooperation across all company functions, through finance to operations and through to THIS. Therefore , it is important to assess needs properly and with a longer-term plan – thereby avoiding siloed information and systems.

Technical debt

Following upon from the above point, technical debt – or specialized sprawl — occurs when an organisation implements technologies for short-term benefits, usually as a result associated with prioritising speed over quality during the development phase.

According to a recent study, technical debt is estimated in order to cost businesses $5 trillion over the particular next 10 years. To put that within perspective, $500 million could be spent every single day on innovation and real digital optimisation for business growth. These systems either lie dormant – often with siloed information captured within them – or function partially with work-around solutions in place.

Such outcomes are costly and inefficient – but perhaps worse is the fact that they have the flow-on effect on future aspects of a business plus, as such, frequently require ‘cleaning up’ years after their original purpose has expired.

Keeping up along with the pace of change

While the needle has certainly moved as a result of the pandemic, there are many other forces at play that have an effect on technology evolution. New opportunities to disrupt markets are usually constantly emerging, and challenger technologies continue to innovate and rethink entire industries. Companies need to consider how they will constantly adapt to ongoing social and technological changes and how these will certainly alter the particular way people use technology.

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