Major gap revealed between digital aspirations and digital performance: Survey

It found that while digital services and applications are critical to future business success, 66 percent of respondents reported that critical digital services and applications are failing at least a few times a month.

Riverbed Jun 20th 2018 A-A+

Riverbed, The Digital Performance Company, announced the results of the Riverbed Digital Performance Global Survey 2018, which found that nearly all (99 percent) of business decision makers agree that optimizing digital performance is essential to business performance, and 98 percent agree (55 percent strongly agree) that digital, including the delivery of digital services and applications, is critical to the future of their business. However, 97 percent of these same business decision makers say that major barriers – including budget contraints, legacy networks and lack of visibility – are holding them back from advancing digital strategies and delivering the performance and customer experience required in today’s digital world.

The global survey includes responses from 1,000 business decision makers, including India, at companies with $500 million or more in revenue across nine countries. It found that while digital services and applications are critical to future business success, nearly two thirds (66 percent) of respondents reported that critical digital services and applications are failing at least a few times a month.
“This survey underscores the tremendous opportunity that maximizing digital performance can have on the user experience and bottom line, while simultaneously highlighting the real challenges companies face today,” said Bjorn Engelhardt, senior vice president, Asia Pacific and Japan at Riverbed Technology. “The findings reinforce that forward-thinking companies in India are well-positioned to lead their industries in the race towards digital transformation by prioritizing investments in modernizing their networks and tools to measure and manage the digital experience for their customers and employees. Those who hesitate to embrace digital strategies and processes will quickly fall by the wayside, and those who drive digital performance will see significant business outcomes.”  
Awareness is High, Need is Immediate  
The need for companies to provide a successful digital experience for customers, partners and employees is well recognized, and it continues to grow in importance. Some 91 percent of Indian business decision makers agree that providing a successful digital experience is even more critical to the company’s bottom line than it was just three years ago.
Likewise, all Indian BDMs surveyed agreed that their companies would benefit from improving performance of digital services and applications, primarily by way of: 
·         Increased revenue/sales and profitability (48 percent)
·         Stronger brand (46 percent)
·         Improved customer experience and satisfaction (44 percent)
Hurdles to Implementing a Digital Strategy are Real
However, it is widely recognized that inadequately performing systems today are a key limitation to a successful digital strategy. In fact, of the 97 percent of Indian business decision makers who said they face challenges when it comes to achieving a more successful digital strategy, most cited multiple challenges including:
·         Budget Constraints (51 percent)
·         Lack of full visibility across the digital or end-user experience (41 percent)
·         Lack of available or appropritely skilled personnel (37 percent)   
And of the 66 percent reporting that critical digital services and applications are failing several times a month, impeding deadlines, diminishing productivity and impacting end user experience, nearly one in five experience failures at least several times a week.
When critical digital services fail, every minute matters, and Indian business leaders are well aware of the impact these failures can and are having on their businesses. The consequences expressed include: 
·         Delayed product launches (40 percent)
·         Loss of sales and revenue (39 percent)
·         Loss of employee productivity (39 percent) 
Investing to Maximize Digital Performance
Smart business leaders are looking to put greater emphasis on the management tools and infrastructure underlying digital services. In fact, 99 percent say that visibility across the digital experience is critical to measure and manage it successfully; and 92 percent of Indian business decision makers believe that a modern IT architecture that delivers greater agility is important to improving digital performance.
Businesses also say the time to act is now. Nearly two thirds (58 percent) of Indian business decision makers say it is critical that their company invests in improving the digital experience for users or customers in the next 12 months. The key areas business decision makers see themselves making investments in the next 12 months include:
·         Accelerating development of applications (53 percent)
·         Modernizing networks and infrastructure to drive greater agility (52 percent)
·         Better understanding and monitoring the end user’s experience (48 percent)
A significant number of business decision makers also identified cloud solutions and emerging technologies as key drivers of the digital experience moving forward. Nearly all (95 percent) of India’s business decision makers believe the use of cloud technologies is important to their companies ongoing digital strategy, and business leaders would like their companies to invest in emerging technologies such as:
·         Machine Learning (41 percent)
·         Internet of Things (41 percent)
·         Data Analytics (40 percent) 
Riverbed is focused on delivering solutions to help organizations maximize digital performance.  The Riverbed Digital Performance Platform brings together a powerful combination of Digital Experience and Next-Generation Infrastructure – Cloud Networking and Cloud Edge – solutions, delivering new levels of visibility to measure and manage the digital experience and operational agility to maximize digital performance and dramatically accelerate business performance and outcomes:
·         Digital Experience (SteelCentral): Unifies device-based user experience, application, infrastructure, and network monitoring to provide a holistic view of a user’s digital experience.  This provides clear insights into how customers are consuming apps, what their digital experience is like, and how that experience directly impacts revenue, productivity, costs, and other business KPIs.  
•    Cloud Networking (SteelConnect, SteelHead, Wi-Fi): Enables a next-generation network architecture with a comprehensive solution that includes SD-WAN, Wi-Fi, application acceleration, and network visibility. Riverbed greatly simplifies and unifies connectivity and management across the entire network, and provides operational agility so organizations can rapidly deliver new digital services or open new branch offices/stores in days versus weeks.
•    Cloud Edge (SteelFusion): Centralizes islands of infrastructure to secure 100 percent of data—the lifeblood of any digital business—while still delivering superior, local-like experiences for users at the edge.