How Businesses and IT Are Forging a New Path for the Digital Age

June 8, 2020 Kristina Avrionova

Organizations are reaping the rewards of far-reaching efforts to modernize, digitally transform, and innovate amid the rapid changes of our digital era. But despite these efforts, businesses around the world know that there is more work to do.

A newly released Boomi survey, "The State of Modernization, Transformation, and Innovation in the Digital Age," finds that organizations are increasing revenue, reducing operational costs, and boosting productivity while improving customer experiences and satisfaction.  And more gains are in the pipeline as these businesses work to capitalize on emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain.

“Thanks to modern technology and proven blueprints, early adopters are forging ahead and already reaping the rewards of modernization and transformation, such as improved customer experiences and streamlined operations," the report notes. “Innovation is what will carry them forward and enable the workforce of the future."

Our in-depth report, conducted for Boomi by the IT research firm Vanson Bourne, is based on a survey of more than 1,200 business and IT leaders across 19 countries in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

The Path to Digital Dominance

Effectively utilizing technology has been the key to transformational success, according to 59 percent of survey respondents. That’s ahead of people and processes, each at 42 percent, and the customer experience, at 41 percent.

Other key trends identified by the survey include:

  • 61% of organizations are prioritizing IT enterprise architecture for modernization
  • 56% of organizations are prioritizing cloud adoption for modernization
  • 45% of organizations cite platform as a service (PaaS) as a top transformation investment
  • 48% of organizations are already using integration platform as a service (iPaaS) in North America
  • 86% of organizations believe technology will dramatically impact how they operate over the next 10 years

The survey, however, underscores that organization still face multiple challenges to more quickly and efficiently roll out their modernization, innovation, and transformation programs.

  • 54% of organizations struggle with budget challenges for driving IT modernization
  • 41% lack sufficient in-house IT skills for transformation
  • 55% say they’re struggling to modernize, transform, and innovate quickly enough
  • 51% say they may soon be unable to compete if they don’t improve at modernizing, transforming, and innovating
  • 38% say their organization’s senior leadership is ill-equipped to oversee modernization, transformation, and innovation efforts

Though modernization, transformation, and innovation have paid dividends in recent years, organizations can’t afford to rest on their laurels. Not when business priorities, drivers of change, and technology needs are rapidly converging, as reflected in our survey.

"Managing those dynamics is a balancing act," the report states. "Organizations need to choose how to invest resources, overcome challenges, and prioritize initiatives. Business and IT leaders have to align on shared objectives to keep up with demand and meet customer expectations for seamless services and stellar experiences."

Learn more about how leading corporations are bringing business and IT together to modernize, transform, and innovate for driving greater organizational speed and agility. Download "The State of Modernization, Transformation, and Innovation in the Digital Age."

Strategies to Leverage Technology and Data

The report highlights three key technology focus areas for organizations to build on transformational successes and continue creating the faster, more agile businesses needed today and into the future:

  1. Organizations need to continue expanding usage of cost-effective cloud technologies, which can help address budgetary challenges. Yet they also need to ensure a smooth migration from legacy to cloud systems, and ensure interoperability with those legacy systems that remain in place.
  2. It’s also critical that organizations can address the ongoing shortage of IT talent. That requires transitioning from legacy systems, which require specialized IT personnel to manage, to technologies featuring low-code development that are easier to use and can be quickly mastered by less skilled IT personal or non-technical business users.
  3. And organizations need modern technology to better utilize the vast volumes of fast-moving data generated in the typical enterprise. As Ed Macosky, Boomi's senior vice president of product, UX, and solutions, notes in the report, “Most important is to have the right data strategy. I always say no one is asking for less data slower. Data is key to making the right strategic and operational decisions."

Cloud-Based IT and Low-Code Development

Our survey suggests that organizations are on the right track to executing on those priority areas.

For example, nearly half of respondents rank cloud-based platform as a service (PaaS) and infrastructure as a service (IaaS) among their top transformation-related technology investments. That helps reduce the licensing and upgrade costs of legacy systems, and trims the technical debt that organizations bear to keep older systems running.

Another top technology investment focus is a low-code development platform, which gives developers prepackaged templates and drag-and-drop tools in a visual environment. That speeds development and minimizes IT personnel requirements, because low-code development doesn't require the deeply specialized skills needed with many legacy systems.

As our survey finds, more than half (51 percent) of organizations not currently using low-code development plan to have a low-code platform in place within the next 12 months. Another 27 percent say low-code development is a possibility in the future. Top objectives include accelerating digital transformation (47 percent) and reducing dependency on hard-to-hire technical skills (38 percent).

Half of respondents rank cloud platforms among their top transformation-related technology investments. This helps reduce the licensing and upgrade costs of legacy systems, and trims the technical debt that organizations bear to keep older systems running.

iPaaS Leads Integration in North America and APAC

And for data strategies, organizations are ramping up usage of integration platform as a service (iPaaS) technology, which provides ease of use and rapid development to exchange information across systems. That helps accelerate transformation while addressing a shortage of developers with specialized IT skills.

Today, iPaaS is the top approach to data and application integration in North America, at 48 percent of organizations, and in Asia-Pacific, at 43 percent. Europe lags behind, with 31 percent using iPaaS. Globally, 38 percent of organizations today use iPaaS, along with custom development (41 percent), traditional middleware (33 percent), and native application integration (32 percent).

In three years, however, 43 percent of global organizations plan to use iPaaS, more than other integration tools and techniques. That increase aligns with research by Ovum and other IT consultancies that finds iPaaS is by far the fast-growing segment of the integration market.

Vanson Bourne found that a majority of organizations worldwide have either adopted iPaaS or plan to do so in the next three years.

iPaaS is also the top choice for cloud data migration — getting information from legacy on-premises systems into new best-of-breed cloud apps. Nearly one-quarter (24 percent) of organizations use iPaaS, compared to real-time streaming (15 percent), or extract, transform, and load (ETL) or traditional middleware (9 percent). More than a third (36 percent) use a mix of approaches.

Accelerating Your Digital Transformation

"The State of Modernization, Transformation, and Innovation in the Digital Age" is packed with data-driven insights that reflect the current and future state of modernization, transformation, and innovation.

We hope this report provides valuable perspective across peer groups, a snapshot of trends and priorities, and practical guidance on how your organization can make the most of initiatives to modernize, transform, and innovate.

Learn more about how leading corporations are bringing business and IT together to modernize, transform and innovate for driving greater organizational speed and agility. Download "The State of Modernization, Transformation, and Innovation in the Digital Age."

About the Author

Kristina Avrionova is a senior product marketing manager at Boomi.

Follow on Linkedin More Content by Kristina Avrionova
Previous Article
International Justice Mission Streamlines Fundraising With Boomi
International Justice Mission Streamlines Fundraising With Boomi

A leading human rights group gains a 360-degree view of its donors to boost retention, increase funding, an...

Next Article
iPaaS vs. ETL: What Do They Offer and How Are They Different?
iPaaS vs. ETL: What Do They Offer and How Are They Different?

It’s important for modern enterprises to understand the key differences between ETL and iPaaS, and how each...