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Many firms wrestle with forcing new technologies onto old systems

IT organizations are struggling with an expanding role that includes both adopting innovation initiatives and keeping core systems running effectively, according to new research from IT services provider Insight Enterprises Inc.

The company hired Market Insights Group to survey 404 IT professionals online in May 2018, and found that 87 percent of IT decision-makers said their department struggles to adapt to the expanding role.

As organizations turn to IT to help navigate systemic cultural and technological changes, business leaders have thrust IT into a state of change, with increasing roles and responsibilities. But the infrastructure, budget and clear roadmap for managing complex IT challenges and transform the business have yet to emerge, according to a vast majority of those surveyed.

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Programmers work at the Maluuba Inc. office in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015. Several leading Canadian researchers and professors have defected to U.S. tech companies such as Google. Already members of the country's AI community are trying to protect what they helped build. A startup called Maluuba, which makes technology that helps computers talk, is opening a research office in Montreal; the University of Toronto has opened a startup accelerator and this fall launched a program dedicated to AI research. Photographer: James MacDonald/Bloomberg

“Organizations have become acutely aware of the critical role technology now plays in overall business strategy, from enabling a more productive and connected workforce to increasing market share and customer loyalty,” said Steve Dodenhoff, president, Insight North America. But the new research shows how competing demands on IT are inhibiting its ability to plan and innovate, he said.

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The challenges IT decision-makers are dealing with include competing demands and not enough resources to effectively support the organization (cited by 51 percent); requests of IT to support innovation, despite existing processes, practices and business operations not evolving to allow them to accomplish this (35 percent); and shadow projects handed off to IT that divert already scheduled resources to fix systems built outside of architecture and processes (26 percent).

Other hurdles include out-of-process or hastily executed decisions on cloud strategy, architecture and platform selection (24 percent); and a lack of clearly defined roles and responsibilities within the organization (24 percent).

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