How to Assist Your Business to Become IT Resilient
Businesses who regard uncertainty as untapped potential are usually several steps ahead in terms of innovation and IT resilient. It’s these same businesses that are agile enough to weather disruptions and make strategic pivots to propel their brand.
Over the last 12 months, most businesses have gotten a crash course in exercising resiliency; a characteristic 60% of survey respondents say will be the defining marker of success post-COVID. Given that global business disruptions and unforeseen crises are likely to continue emerging, they’re probably right.
Enduring the unexpected while continuing to make meaningful contributions is a tall order but certainly not impossible. At Gartner’s 2020 IT Symposium, the industry leaders offered this take on how to do just that.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, most CIOs leveraged their organisations’ existing digital investments becoming IT resilient, and some CIOs accelerated their digital strategies by investing in some of the three composable building blocks,” said Tina Nunno, distinguished research vice president and Gartner Fellow. “To ensure their organisations were resilient, many CIOs also applied at least one of the four critical principles of composability, gaining more speed through discovery, greater agility through modularity, better leadership through orchestration, and resilience through autonomy.”
Looking to break that down into practical terms? Start with these future-oriented strategies.
Refocus your business
When was the last time you examined your company’s IT resilient strategy for the near – and distant – future? If it’s been more than 6-12 months, it’s time to start re-strategising.
The world is a different place than it was this time last year. The same is likely to hold true next year. Companies who didn’t have a solid risk management plan pre-pandemic were more likely to flounder. Now, there’s no question that planning for the unknown must be an ongoing event.
Start by tapping into the current market. How have your customer’s needs, priorities, confidence and risk-aversion changed? Lean into your ingenuity as you move to reposition your brand’s relevancy.
It’s very likely the work you do is still valuable. The trick is to get clear on your strengths, communicate them and face changes head-on.
Create a plan
Once you’ve refocused, take action. Go through and update your operations in a way that aligns with the situation at hand. Maybe that entails digitising processes that once took place in person, creating an online sales channel or updating your security infrastructure. Though you can’t plan for everything, it can be helpful to predefine responses to potential problems, so you can respond quickly instead of react retroactively.
Experts say you shouldn’t be afraid to try new things. New challenges often require new ways of thinking. Though your plan will be company-specific, changing your approach to IT resilient could entail:
- Creating new products or service delivery options that better address shifts in consumer needs
- Testing your equipment and software to see how it might stand up to disruptions, security threats or increased demand
- Getting feedback from key stakeholders who may have different vantage points of the market or competitor insights and revising plans accordingly
- Adopting a start-up style agility with a willingness to digitise and invest in tech that helps you move with the flow of change instead of resisting it
- Accepting that changes may be long-term, giving you and your team the opportunity to learn new skills and adapt
- Researching and adopting new technology that helps you better assess your field’s most insight-rich data and make more informed decisions
The plan won’t always go, well, according to plan, so staying flexible is a professional imperative.
According to the Center for Creative Leadership, the three key components of adaptability include:
- Cognitive flexibility, which relies on different mental frameworks to help leaders think differently and strategically
- Emotional flexibility, navigating a variety of emotions, including those of others, in an attuned way while moving the mission forward
- Dispositional flexibility, with one part realism and one part optimism to set proper expectations while embracing ambiguity as a positive
Support your staff with the correct IT Equipment & Become IT Resilient
In order to thrive, maintain productivity and adapt to change, you must have the correct equipment to support your future strategies, IT resilient and growth plans. Here are some ways to make sure your team is equipped for success:
- Find the right tools to keep employees engaged, whether they’re remote or in-office
- Invest in enabling your remote workforce to perform their best
- Stay ahead of the curve by following digital transformation trends
- Encourage productivity with a more human-centric approach to technology
The road to life and work post-lockdown may not be linear – and that’s ok. Aim to be a business who embraces challenge as an opportunity to strengthen your operations anyway. This is the ultimate adaption as we make our collective way forward.