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451 Research recently conducted a webinar showcasing Managed Services Trends in 2018. The first several minutes of this webinar focused on digital transformation and showed some very interesting statistics about how businesses are approaching digital transformation initiatives.

In this post, we’ll share some of these insights and provide our perspectives, but if you are interested, you can access the full webinar here. Then, in future posts, we’ll drill deeper into digital transformation to discuss how to improve your chance of success and avoid potential pitfalls.

Digital Transformation: Everybody’s Doing It

Well, maybe not everybody, but certainly a majority of businesses are focused on digital transformation. Of the organizations studied by 451 Research, 61% said they are planning major digital transformation initiatives next year. When asked about their digital transformation goals, three objectives rose to the top: intelligence gathering, creating more agile processes and increasing customer centricity through tools like self-service platforms.

Upcoming webinar_Enterprise IT Shifts Off-Premises: Cloud, Data, & Digital Transformation

Make no mistake. These organizations have their work cut out for them. More than half (54%) said it will require significant operations and IT transformation in order to digitally transform their organization. In other words, to digitally transform the company, they first need to transform IT.

3 Ways to Inject Digital Transformation DNA Into Your Organization

You can’t (yet) alter a person’s DNA, but thankfully, you can inject Digital Transformation DNA into your collective IT team. Nevertheless, some methods are easier and more productive than others.

1. Training your current staffing. Increasing the skill set of your current team is almost never a bad idea. You need to attract the best talent you can, and according to Gallup Research, 87% of millennials rate “professional or career growth and development opportunities” as important in a job. But, it’s not just millennials who feel that way. More than half (69%) of non-millennials said the same thing.

The downside to leveling up your current staff is that it can take a while for them to obtain the skill levels needed for true digital transformation. Plus, it’s not unusual for IT teams to have a high rate of turnover. The average tenure at some of the top tech companies is less than two years. While you may not be a tech company per se, your IT employees travel in the same circles, and they see the advantages of always being on the lookout for the next awesome gig.

2. Hiring new staff. If you have a weak spot in a critical area, such as security, hiring new talent can help you shore it up. But, what kind of talent do you need? Will a system security generalist do, or do you need them to have specific skills in areas such as DDoS mitigation or dealing with ransomware? Can you even find a generalist that has the required breadth AND depth of skills, or do you need to be budgeting for multiple hires? And, once you hire them, how will you help them keep up with the latest advancements and risks?

Transforming your IT organization through hiring is never easy. There’s a reason the number of jobs in tech is rising along with the number of unfilled positions. Finding talent with exactly the right skill set is hard. Plus, it’ll cost you. Six figures is not uncommon, especially for talent with even just a few years of experience. (Check resources like Payscale and Glassdoor for rates in your area.) Then, there is the problem we already mentioned ¬– getting this talent to stay long enough to have an impact on your transformation.

3. Partner with a Managed Services Provider (MSP). This is certainly the fastest way to transform your IT organization. Since Managed Services are often offered cafeteria style, it is usually the most cost effective as well because you can keep in-house those tasks that you already do well while partnering with an MSP to shore up weaknesses.

Here’s a tip for what to look for when evaluating MSPs. Look for MSPs that provide all of the essentials you need. For example, it doesn’t make sense to work with an MSP for infrastructure if they aren’t also security experts. Then, when you find an MSP that looks like they have the expertise you’re looking for, don’t take their word for it. Dig into their credentials to make sure their stated expertise matches their actual experience.

Upcoming webinar_Enterprise IT Shifts Off-Premises: Cloud, Data, & Digital Transformation

Your Next Steps

We welcome the opportunity to talk with you about your 2018 (and beyond) digital transformation goals. We can help you craft an IT foundation that meets your budget and timeline and improves your chance of success. Reach out to us today with any questions you have or to set up a call.