Everybody knows they need to change their old technology stack and processes. But is it enough to upgrade your current systems and maybe add an analytics or AI center of excellence to handle the new initiatives? Probably not, according to a new report from consulting firm Accenture.
To get the full value out of technology investments, organizations need to focus on investing in what Accenture calls "Future Systems." Generally speaking, these future systems are a rethinking of the architecture and technology a company needs to move quickly and take advantage of tomorrow's opportunities. They use technologies like cloud, along with end-to-end data pipelines that are flexible enough for tomorrow's AI and other projects.
"Today's C-suite is investing staggering amounts of money in new technology, but not every company is realizing the benefits of innovation as a result of those investments," said Bhaskar Ghosh, group chief executive, Accenture Technology Services, in a statement. "Competing in today's data-driven, post-digital economy means organizations need to have a carefully calibrated strategy toward technology adoption and a clear vision for what their companies' future systems should look like."
Do it right and you will grow at double the rate of your less progressive peers.
Accenture says there are companies that are already on the right track with future systems -- the top 10% that the firm has identified as Leaders. At the other end of the spectrum, Accenture calls the bottom 25% Laggards. There's a big difference between how these two groups of organizations are performing.
Leaders are growing at more than twice the rate of Laggards. What's more, Laggards stand to potentially miss out on 46% in revenue gains by 2023 if they don't change their enterprise technology approach, according to the Accenture report.
Accenture's new report titled Full Value. Full Stop. How to scale innovation and achieve full value with Future Systems, is based on interviews with C-level executives from 8,356 companies, 20 industries, and 22 countries.
According to the report, a big part of the change ahead means rethinking traditional IT as we've known it as compared to what's needed in today's businesses.
"Value is difficult to capture in part because the conventional IT 'stack' -- spanning software applications, hardware, telecommunications, facilities and data centers -- wasn't built for today's world of analytics, sensors, mobile computing, artificial intelligence applications, the Internet of Things (IoT), and billions of devices. Nor was it designed to adapt to the world of tomorrow, whatever that might be," the report said.
Instead, Accenture said, the key to success going forward for these companies is investment in future systems, which are "a state in which businesses adopt complex interconnected living systems of technologies, applications, and people." This approach will allow "a seamless flow of product and service innovations from one process to another."
Accenture breaks down these future systems into the following three categories: boundaryless, adaptable, and radically human. The following are Accenture's brief definitions of the terms:
These three categories are what will drive organizations to be leaders and really get the value out of their modern IT investments.
"To maximize the return on their technology investments, leading organizations are improving their technology quotient, going beyond building pockets of excellence, to implementing a strategy for achieving enterprise-wide transformation," Ghosh said.
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Jessica Davis has spent a career covering the intersection of business and technology at titles including IDG's Infoworld, Ziff Davis Enterprise's eWeek and Channel Insider, and Penton Technology's MSPmentor. She's passionate about the practical use of business intelligence, ... View Full Bio