Legacy systems, limited budgets top barriers to digital transformation

When asked about the biggest barriers to digital transformation in 2019, nearly one-third of organizations surveyed (30 percent) cited insufficient budget and 22 percent cited the inability to experiment quickly. But having legacy systems was the top response, at 41 percent. Lack of change management capabilities and relevant skills are also seen as key hurdles in 2019.

Those were among the findings of the Infosys Digital Radar, based on an online survey of more than 1,000 global C-level and other senior executives conducted in November 2018, as well as phone interviews with practitioners and subject matter experts.

The study found that when it comes to digital transformation, organizations can be grouped into three clusters based on their progress: visionaries, explorers, and watchers. The firm defines visionaries as organizations that understand the potential of digital to completely transform business; explorers as those that commit to digital programs driven by the need to enhance customer experience; and watchers as those that see digital through the prism of efficiency.

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Attendees working on laptop computers participate in the Yahoo! Inc. Mobile Developer Conference Hackathon in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015. The Hackathon is an opportunity for mobile developers to come together and hack around the Yahoo! Inc. Mobile Developer Suite. Photographer: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg

Most executives are confident in their companies to advance from the watcher to the explorer level without too much difficulty, the study revealed. But they feel that reaching the visionary level is much harder.

To understand what characterizes organizations at different stages of the transformation journey, Infosys identified 22 key digital initiatives and assessed where companies stood on implementing each one.

The research revealed that as companies advance in their journey, they begin to operate more digital initiatives at scale, with visionaries averaging 12 at scale, and having completed pilots on seven additional initiatives. Explorers average six initiatives at scale and have completed pilot projects for seven more. Watchers typically operate at scale on only one or two digital initiatives, with another one or two initiatives in the pilot testing phase.

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