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2022: Can IT Leaders Drive Business Innovation vs. Reactive Technology Maintenance?

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, IT leaders are striving to shift their focus from technology maintenance to business innovation -- but the shift isn't easy, according to research from Snow Software.

Indeed, the 2022 IT Priorities Report delves into the roles and expectations of today’s IT leaders, and includes findings around the increased demand for specialized IT roles, the future of hybrid work, and the top priorities of IT leaders as they look ahead to 2022.

The report surveyed 1,000 IT leaders in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia and India to take a comprehensive look at the issues and trends driving next year’s technology agenda.

Business Innovation vs. Technology Troubleshooting: The Time Struggle Continues

Alastair Pooley, Chief Information Officer, Snow
Alastair Pooley, chief information officer, Snow

The survey found that 94 percent of IT decision-makers (ITDMs) point to innovation as a top priority for their organization, though 71 percent say IT spends too much time reacting to problems rather than looking for innovations.

Other points of note from the survey:

  • Eighty-nine percent of IT leaders claimed that IT roles were undervalued pre-COVID but are now viewed as essential – with 90% claiming they have become trusted advisors to the business.
  • Nine in ten IT decision-makers say the pace of digital transformation has dramatically increased at their organization over the past year, and another 94% say that innovation is a top priority for their organization.
  • Hybrid work is here to stay, and IT leaders are confident in their strategy. Ninety percent of those surveyed say their organization is now able to deal with hybrid work efficiently, post-pandemic.
  • However, 78 percent also predict hybrid work will become a burden for IT, as they seek ways to ensure they can hire and maintain talented IT staff while managing their company’s remote workforce.
  • The biggest spend increases in the last year were in security and cloud.
  • Top priorities for IT leaders in 2022 are adopting new technology to improve day-to-day operations (30%), reducing IT costs (28%), and improving customer service and satisfaction (28%).

Alastair Pooley, Chief Information Officer, Snow, commented:

“I have no doubt that we will look back at 20/21 as a period of dramatic change, which has given CIOs and IT leaders an enhanced voice in shaping strategy and goals which can drive revenue growth and innovation going forward. The pace of change will not slow down, making it even more critical that IT and business leaders have excellent oversight of their technology estate, allowing them to effectively manage technology, optimize spend and reduce risk which will, in turn, enable them to better weather future global events and better prepare for organizational success.”