A new survey of 400 IT decision-makers from Insight Enterprises found that 95% of IT decision-makers say the impact of the pandemic accelerated business transformation priorities.
The 2022 Insight Intelligent Technology Report found that nearly all of the IT leaders surveyed have been affected in some way by the IT supply chain disruption. The survey featured the responses of 400 North America-based IT leaders to a 23-question survey in September.
About two-thirds said they believe their enterprise has successfully adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic and adjusted to new realities using new tech and IT processes.
Stan Lequin, senior vice president and general manager of solutions at Insight, said the question is now about how companies can sustain and build on their progress.
"This comes down to being ambitious in their pursuit of new business transformation strategies while investing in the underlying IT infrastructure that powers everything -- from collaboration tools enabling remote work to automation and edge computing," Lequin said.
"But IT executives are grappling with real challenges. Talent shortages and global supply chain issues impede progress as IT is being tasked with more responsibility than ever before to power the business, and our new report also identifies several internal roadblocks, too."
More than half of all IT leaders cited security as the top investment they plan to prioritize when modernizing their IT foundation. Nearly 40% said cloud infrastructure and platform managed services would be prioritized, while another 37% said data analytics would be focused on. Others mentioned software as a service and cloud monitoring as well.
When looking ahead for the next three years, respondents said their work would be most affected by AI, machine learning, high-performance computing, data analytics, and digital workplace technologies.
Surprisingly, 61% said internal challenges would be the biggest hindrance to IT modernization, followed by security and data privacy issues, competing priorities and upfront costs.
"C-Suite executives must think holistically about the IT ecosystem and how digital transformation and IT modernization go hand in hand. With resources at a premium, the emphasis has been on building resiliency vs. returning to innovation," said Matt Jackson, vice president of digital innovation at Insight. "But now is also a good time for business leaders to plan for the future. They have an opportunity to re-envision what their businesses will look like moving forward, and the results suggest they're starting to lean into this more."
Almost 80% said IT departments had taken on the new challenge of cybersecurity since February 2020. When asked about the "greatest perceived threats," 62% of respondents mentioned competitor products or services improvements, while more than half said innovative market disruptors.
Many also cited a shortage of IT talent, and 52% said their team suffered from employee attrition. More than 44% said there was a gap in skills and talent because of market demands.
Almost all respondents said they planned to rely on third parties in order to handle "the depth of the business imperatives owned by IT." Nearly 90% said they expected to offload more projects onto third parties over the next year.
In response to the IT supply chain issues, 44% said they planned to "shift application processing requirements to the cloud to lessen the impact of IT supply chain disruption."
"The difficult reality is that global supply chain issues will continue well into 2022 and likely beyond," Megan Amdahl, a senior vice president at Insight. "While this is a very challenging time, the disruption has forced organizations to make necessary changes in planning, purchasing and processing that will better position them to manage volatility now and in the future."