In an era of rapid digital transformation and technological disruption, businesses around the world are struggling to keep up.

According to a new survey by BMC, an enterprise IT solutions provider, and Forbes Insights, while the majority (86 per cent) of IT executive respondents recognized that the pace of change is accelerating, only slightly above half (55 per cent) said their IT budgets are increasing.

A significant portion of respondents pointed out that IT service management is key to their digital transformation efforts, and especially relevant to initiatives such as cloud computing (86 per cent), mobility (83 per cent) and big data (83 per cent).

In an attempt to achieve this transformation and meet the demand for increased efficiency and productivity, IT executives surveyed indicated to BMC that they are “increasingly turning to cloud-based services and implementing greater automation, creating a clear case for digital transformation to make their organizations and workforces more agile, mobile and responsive to customer demands.”

But despite the clear need to invest in more innovative digital solutions, more money and effort is being put towards “keeping the lights on,” or ongoing maintenance and management of existing systems, which takes people and funds away from developing new initiatives or projects such as digital transformation, virtualization or cloud.

“A total of 37 per cent of executives report that the majority of their IT budgets go to ongoing maintenance and management – maintaining uptime and availability; applying upgrades, fixes and patches; and ensuring security,” the survey found. “Another 31 per cent report the majority of their IT staff hours are spent in maintenance mode as well.”

As a result, 75 per cent believe “the time, money, and resources spent on ongoing maintenance and management is affecting the overall competitiveness of their organization.”

However, more help is needed to turn the tide, the respondents said. The survey found that half of them believe they require more training and skills to keep up with the changes in the industry, while 41 per cent said they are stretched too thin to handle all the new demands placed upon them. And 37 per cent made it clear that they are under more pressure than ever before to complete projects at a faster rate, which only furthers the pressure on the IT department.

The survey received responses from 261 senior-level executives, of which 61 per cent were from North America, 30 per cent were from Western Europe, and five per cent were from the Asia-Pacific region. Close to one-third were C-level executives in the primary industries of technology, manufacturing and business services.

Nayaki Nayyar, president of digital service management at BMC, points out that businesses of all sizes are scrambling to keep pace with the “fierce rate of change, transformation and risk of extinction in the wake of more agile newcomers and incumbents.”

“These survey results shine a clear spotlight on the need to invest in multi-cloud service management solutions that accelerate digital transformation. The key to success is balancing agility with cost, control, and security,” he adds.



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