By learning to manage the three areas of enterprise technology disruption, leaders can turn today’s most complex tech challenges into competitive advantages.

Dr. Stefan Sigg, Chief Product Offier

March 18, 2024

4 Min Read
Puzzle Pieces
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In recent years, companies have faced an onslaught of challenges that turned business-as-usual into a battle against chaos. As with any chaos that’s left unresolved, what started behind the scenes -- or in this case, behind IT’s doors -- didn’t take long to creep into other areas. Today, enterprise IT has grown so much in complexity and scale that it’s wreaking havoc across organizations’ technology, operations, and connectivity.

To understand how we got here, we must go back a few years to when the business world was hit by a tidal wave of disruption that sparked a subsequent wave of digitization. The pandemic-induced shift to remote work, followed by geopolitical and economic strife that continues to this day, turned businesses’ ambitions toward digital transformation into a survival necessity. In a recent survey that Software AG commissioned of 1,500 IT leaders, 86% said their business has substantially grown its tech stack in recent years, while 78% said the size of their technology infrastructure today is actually making it harder to be agile or productive.

While this accelerated tech investment brought the world into a new dawn of digital transformation, many applications and systems were deployed to solve short-term problems, with long-term planning put on hold. In the aftermath, many businesses are riddled with silos, system redundancies, mounting technical debt, and inefficient processes -- the perfect environment for disruption to thrive. The good news is that with the right information and tools at your disposal, it’s possible to turn today’s chaos into opportunities for next-level governance, productivity, agility, and competitiveness tomorrow.

IT Excellence

Today, 76% of US IT decision-makers say technology has gotten more challenging in their organization over the past 2 - 3 years, mostly because the pace of change is faster than the pace of skills development and there’s more conflict between business teams and IT.

Two primary tasks are getting trickier: The first is tying all these systems together to give a clear and accurate picture of compliance; the second is figuring out how to increase the speed at which all this information can be processed to maintain smooth operations.

To increase the speed and precision of information processing, organizations must first gain a holistic view of every app, system, and process sitting disconnected in various departments across their end-to-end portfolio. With this in place, they have the freedom to choose public and private cloud solutions, as well as on-prem infrastructures to streamline their unique workflows and support the flow of data. This clear picture of all infrastructure commitments and setups also makes governance easier.

Operational Efficiency

The rise of low-code/no-code self-service tools, coupled with generative AI, has given non-technical users the new ability to build and test applications. While this freedom has offered great benefits, it’s also added new inefficiencies caused by implementation shortcuts, and new forms of technical debt. New technology creates new processes that need to be managed. Generative AI will only compound these issues, as business users often jump in without going through proper IT channels. The resulting operational chaos leads 37% to think their processes are now too complex.

Given the potential business impact of AI, identifying processes that would benefit from automation is an ideal first step forward. Explore process mining and modeling to uncover new and improved ways of delivering services, spot new opportunities, create more effective standards, and boost efficiency.

Chaos of Connectivity

The race to out-digitize the competition has led many organizations to invest in new systems without a plan to integrate it all. The chaos of connectivity that comes with adding new systems without integrating them directly impedes agility, productivity, and governance, while hindering innovation and delaying time to market.

Nearly 70% of companies have seen an increase in technical debt in the last 12 months, with almost half (42%) investing heavily without a clear IT integration plan. To unlock the value trapped in their data, organizations need a single integration platform that can be used by everyone across the enterprise while being managed centrally. This potent combination allows businesses to rapidly adapt to their changing technology needs, respond to business requests quickly, and have exacting control over every integration across the organization.

Conclusion

Unraveling all these areas of disruption can seem overwhelming but having full control over your infrastructure and architecture is the foundation for success. When you have a complete understanding of your whole infrastructure, you can begin doing the work to optimize workflows, harness generative AI responsibly, standardize processes, and innovate around new products or strategies to boost competitiveness in the market. With the right information and tools in place, the chaos will be calmed and risks become opportunities.  

About the Author(s)

Dr. Stefan Sigg

Chief Product Offier, Software AG

Dr. Stefan Sigg has been a member of the Management Board of Software AG since April 2017 and is responsible for Software AG’s entire product portfolio, including global support, cloud operations and research.

Dr. Sigg earned both his master's degree and Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Bonn, Germany. He started his professional career in SAP's product development unit in 1995. After several management positions, he took over the product leadership for SAP Business Warehouse, SAP HANA, and SAP Analytics.

Additionally, Sigg has given courses and lectures on analytics, big data technologies and IoT at the Technical University of Darmstadt since 2014.

He is also a member of the following committees: Supervisory Board of the German Research Institute for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Board of Trustees of the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technologies, and the Supervisory Board of Fischer Information Technology AG.

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