Technology in 2022: sustainability, predictability and resilience as the blueprint for business success

By Carmen Ene, CEO of 3stepIT and BNP Paribas 3 Step IT - April 20, 2022

Last week Gartner issued its latest IT spending forecasts, where it predicted the information technology budget would reach $4.4 Trillion in 2022.

This impressive figure shows that digital transformation has evolved from a trend to a systemic business model shift across every sector.

 

What does this mean for businesses?

 

Technology sits at the heart of enterprises’ operations more than ever before. It is the platform that enables their innovation and the springboard that powers their progress, drives the creation of new products and allows them to improve their customer experience.

 

Technology also plays a significant role in helping businesses, and society, in the transition to net-zero.

 

Risks and opportunities

Today, businesses must predict the future and accelerate their digitalisation to remain competitive and take advantage of unique market possibilities. All while also dealing with erratic supply chains, components shortages and social unrest.

To ensure enduring success, enterprises must recognise both the opportunities and the risks associated with digital transformation.

 

A matter of control

Gartner predicts that the two fastest-growing categories of technology spending in 2022 will be software and IT services. However, neither can be decoupled from the hardware needed to make them operable. That’s why device spending is projected to hit 824.6 billion dollars in 2022 alone.

 

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, technology preparedness became a critical differentiator for businesses, allowing them to quickly scale up or down and adapt to new circumstances.

 

Today, businesses must have access to management platforms that enable them to oversee and run their portfolio of devices– from an operational and financial perspective – to ensure the resilience of their digital transformation.

You cannot manage what you cannot measure, after all.

 

Tech as a sustainable business asset

With ownership of technology comes responsibility, which doesn’t end when the equipment is replaced by a more recent model that meets a business’ new needs.

 

As the EU’s Circular economy action plan shows, this responsibility can’t be addressed by recycling alone. E-waste is the fastest growing waste stream globally, and governments, shareholders and consumers are putting tremendous pressure on organisations to deal with this issue.

 

As CIOs rush to acquire new devices, the truth is that access to technology, not ownership of it, is at the core of today’s digital transformation. Hyperscalers, for instance, offer enterprises agility, reliability and flexibility by removing the burden of hosting, monetising and processing data themselves.

 

As environmental regulations increase and the margins within which organisations can operate narrow, businesses need to move to a circular model for IT procurement and use. A model based on alternative ownership, asset life extension and predictable renewal at the end of the first cycle.

 

This way, they can minimise the liability associated with using technology while reducing the carbon impact of their assets on the environment.

 

More data in more places

As the number of devices grows, GDPR compliance requirements and reputational risks increase dramatically for businesses as their customers’ data get distributed across their digital footprint. CIOs and other business leaders must understand the importance of planning how to protect their data both during and after the devices’ lifecycle.

 

No business would consider not having a cyber security plan while the devices are used. In the same way, no organisation can afford technology with sensitive data to be discovered in a landfill or a locker room in an old office once they are discarded.

 

Building back smarter

Businesses are at the heart of the economy. And they play a crucial role in supporting the transition to a greener, fairer and more resilient society.

 

As they digitally transform, they must be given the tools to achieve efficiency without jeopardising sustainability; and the solutions to improve their compliance while maintaining operational success and productivity.

 

Too much is at stake to get one of the pieces of the puzzle wrong.

 

As technology is the platform on which businesses build their digital transformation, helping them make it sustainable, predictable and resilient is the first step toward long-lasting success.

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