Digital 'window of survival' only three years for most firms, says study

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A large percentage of companies in the U.S. have a three-year window of survival if they fail at digital transformation, according to a new report from Kong, a provider of application programming interface (API) and service lifecycle management technology.

The company commissioned research firm Vanson Bourne to survey 200 technology leaders at large U.S. companies, and found that 39 percent expect their companies to go under or be acquired by 2023 if they lag behind.

A large majority of the respondents (89 percent) think the failure to adopt microservices will hurt their company’s ability to compete. Likewise, three quarters expect serious professional ramifications, such as being fired, losing out on a promotion, or missing out on a bonus, for failed modernization initiatives.

The survey shows that open source is prevalent among a large majority of organizations (83 percent). The types of open source technologies used most include databases (64 percent), containers (48 percent), API gateways (41 percent), infrastructure automation (40 percent), and container orchestration (37 percent).

Most of the organizations surveyed (84 percent) are already using microservices. Notably, 43 percent of organizations with between 3,000 to 4,999 employees are using entirely distributed architectures.

The main reasons, beyond cost, that are driving enterprises to transition to microservices include increased security (56 percent), increased speed of development (55 percent), faster integration of new technology (53 percent), and increased infrastructure flexibility (53 percent).

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