BT launches new scheme to support digital transformation


BT's latest CIO report has revealed digital transformation and the cloud are the biggest priorities for companies and every business questioned by the company said they are driving forward to make sure they are digitally sound.

The three most disruptive technologies within large organisations are cloud (58 per cent), mobility and collaboration (54 per cent) and data (52 per cent). A fifth of the 1,000 CIOs questioned said their company is completely cloud-centric, yet 65 per cent said their current infrastructure is struggling to meet the growing demands of digital technologies.

Security, as always, is the biggest barrier to cloud adoption, although a third of the CIOs said they understand cloud can actually improve security if used correctly.

As a result of this shift to the cloud and focus on digital transformation, the role of the CIO is changing. BT's previous CIO report revealed the role was becoming more strategic, creative and consultative. Now, the CIO is an essential part of the board, making many of the important decisions about the direction of the entire organisation, rather than just where the business should take its IT services.

"The creative use of technology is absolutely accepted as a differentiator, not just in transforming costs or efficiency, but in improving customer experience and enabling disruptive growth," BT explained in its report, saying the network is at the heart of everything companies are doing now and in future.

Almost a fifth of IT spending will come from outside the IT function within the next two years, focusing on the changing needs and expectations of customers rather than just addressing the needs of staff within the organisation itself. CIOs are also expected to continue their responsibilities with keeping companies secure, however, with the robust infrastructure required.

"If there's one key message from the report, it's that there is no blueprint for any of this," the report continued. "The challenge is knowing the right questions to ask when, as well as knowing what matters and what doesn't. We all need to have an open mind. The constraints of technology are lifting, enabling people to achieve more."

As a result of its findings, BT has revealed its The Digital Possible initiative, which aims to help CIOs adopt digital transformation in their organisation.

It will bring a range of new digital services to market to support CIOs, including real time big data analysis capabilities, expansion of its cloud connectivity and software defined networking services, new security and professional services capabilities and the launch of UK and global mobility services through BT's acquisition of EE.

"The pace of digital change is creating new opportunities for our customers and those opportunities require quick responses. The role of the digital CIO is one of the most demanding in business. They need to be strategic, creative, growth-minded and cost conscious," said Luis Alvarez, CEO of Global Services.

"They have to understand technology and people, and balance control and safety with enablement and speed. They are becoming the pioneers of change. To be successful, they now require strategic partnerships within and beyond their organisation."

Clare Hopping
Freelance writer

Clare is the founder of Blue Cactus Digital, a digital marketing company that helps ethical and sustainability-focused businesses grow their customer base.

Prior to becoming a marketer, Clare was a journalist, working at a range of mobile device-focused outlets including Know Your Mobile before moving into freelance life.

As a freelance writer, she drew on her expertise in mobility to write features and guides for ITPro, as well as regularly writing news stories on a wide range of topics.