Kathy Gibson is at the IDC CIO Summit 2022 – People and organisations change for one of two reasons: they are forced to change; or they want to. But often the work required to make a change is just too daunting and they give up.

This is according to Aurelia Edwards, enterprise architect at Workday, who adds that the pandemic has demonstrated how important it is to prepare for constant change.

“IT leaders have been given the huge task of creating architectural choices to meet business challenges: do they lift and shift, start from scratch, or buy products to fill the gaps?

“There is a lot of technology complexity, and so much pressure on the CIO to wok with HR and finance leaders,” she says.

But they could be falling short of the goal, Edwards says: 55% of business leaders say their organasation’s digital strategy is often or always outpaced by the demands of the business.

“Existing systems just can’t adapt or keep up with demands, creating a bigger and bigger acceleration gap.”

A massive 75% of HR leaders do not believe technology can help with people performance, and 65% of business leaders still have to wait for their data.

Adaptable organisations demonstrate a number of common characteristics, Edwards says.

* Continuous relcalibration – Covid opened people’s eyes to the fact most organisations have a massive skills and cultural issue, and made companies relook at how they become adapatable.

* Run in the now – this is about breaking down data silos to operate seamlessly in realtime.

* Mitigate uncertainty with the full picture – bring in all the data so decisions are based on the whole story.

* Empowering business owners – how quickly can a structure be change, or an entity added? Can a business user change a process if they see inefficiencies?

* Elevate people performance- we know they are the biggest assets. Organisations need to be able to meet where their people are in their journey, and engage with them so they are productive.

But changing is hard, Edwards explains. This is largely because of inelastic operations, calcified processes; siloed data; brittle, costly and complex integrations; lacklustre experiences; and the risks associated with innovation.

“Adaptabilty is critical to close the gap. Companies need to activate IT’s transformation engine to allow them to innovate more.”