Australian companies ahead of the digital transformation game

Published on the 30/03/2017 | Written by Newsdesk

Australian digital transformation_Mulesoft

Research from MuleSoft delivers virtual pat on the back for local businesses…

With the release of its 2017 Connectivity Benchmark Report on digital transformation initiatives and the business impact of APIs, MuleSoft has said that Australian companies are ahead of the curve compared to other countries surveyed when it comes to delivering on digital transformation initiatives.

In Australia, 95 percent of respondents report they have already made “some” or “significant” progress towards their company’s digital transformation goals. This compares with 83 percent of respondents overall.

The survey polled 951 IT decision makers (ITDMs) globally, including 101 respondents in Australia; however, despite strong progress, many Australian ITDMs are struggling to close the IT delivery gap, with the number one challenge cited as the integration of siloed applications and data (50 percent). This was followed by a business and IT misalignment (45 percent) and inefficiencies from “recreating the wheel” with each new line-of-business project (41 percent).

To complete digital transformation projects more quickly, MuleSoft said ITDMs in Australia are turning to legacy modernisation (47 percent) and building and managing APIs (39 percent).

When asked about their API strategies, 50 percent of Australian ITDMs report they have one in place with a further 32 percent expecting this to be the case by the end of 2017. Of those without an API strategy, 44 percent indicate this was because the business does not understand the impact of APIs, further validating the existing misalignment between the business and IT.

●     A majority (69 percent) of Australian ITDMs report the integration of new software with existing systems is a key business need driving their API strategy. This was followed by a desire for business teams to self-serve IT (47 percent) and enabling innovation (41 percent).

●     When asked how much revenue is generated by APIs and related activities, 33 percent of Australian ITDMs say it is between US$1 million and US$5 million. A further 10 percent estimate revenue generated was between US$5 million and US$10 million.

●     94 percent of Australian ITDMs report that their API strategy gives their organisation the ability to release new products and services faster.

While, according to the 2017 report, Australia is leading the pack when it comes to digital transformation projects, the 2017 report found progress is also being made in other countries. Of the global survey group, 50 percent say they made “significant” progress on their digital transformation projects, up from 36 percent in 2016. In Australia, 58 percent say they made “significant” progress, up from 43 percent in 2016.

●     64 percent of global ITDMs say their companies have seen an increase in productivity after adopting an API strategy, compared to 71 percent in Australia. Additionally, 22 percent of global ITDMs say they generate more than half of their company’s total revenue through APIs and activities directly related to API implementation, compared to 28 percent in Australia.

●     25 percent of global ITDMs are leveraging APIs to fulfill line-of-business requests, compared to 38 percent in Australia. 48 percent of global ITDMs are leveraging business intelligence and analytics to fulfill line-of-business requests, compared to 54 percent in Australia.

●     27 percent of global ITDMs are “extremely confident” that their IT teams will be able to keep up with demands from line-of-business teams, compared to 34 percent in Australia.

Security tops the priority list

The IT delivery gap is causing many business users to take matters into their own hands by purchasing technology tools outside of IT— often SaaS applications. This shadow IT can put customer and product data at risk. Despite over half of ITDMs saying they are “extremely” or “very” confident they can prevent or withstand security threats, the emergence of shadow IT and the continued movement to the cloud may pose unforeseen threats for businesses.

●     The survey found 45 percent of Australian ITDMs put IT security as their number one priority for 2017. This was followed by cloud applications (37 percent) and integration of applications and data sources (30 percent).

●     62 percent of Australian ITDMs say their companies have adopted more than 20 applications outside of the IT department, and more than half (55 percent) say more than 21 percent of the technology budget comes from outside IT.

●     82 percent of Australian ITDMs say cloud computing, the highest ranked technology, is “very” or “extremely” important to the future of their businesses; 64 percent give this ranking to mobile computing, while 59 percent point to remote sensors and the Internet of Things (IoT).

“This report supports a number of our market observations,” said Jonathan Stern, MuleSoft ANZ regional VP. “Most specifically, whilst Australian businesses made promising progress on their digital transformation journey in 2016, ahead of their global colleagues and competitors, they still have a considerable way to go to accomplish their business’ digital goals. Secondly, it’s clear that organisations which have adopted an API-led connectivity approach are delivering products to both internal and external customers far faster than previously. It’s also unarguable that these faster delivery cycles are a necessity to bridge the IT delivery gap and to harness digital forces.”

Download the complete MuleSoft 2017 Connectivity Benchmark Report.

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