As difficult as the pandemic has been for many businesses, it has also acted as a catalyst for cloud adoption and digital transformation. However, new research from AWS suggests companies are at risk of squandering the progress made.
The cloud computing heavyweight surveyed 10,000 IT and business leaders from across Europe, with the goal of gaining insight into how businesses will approach the next stage of the pandemic as some nations begin to unlock.
AWS found that, despite the fact 64% of businesses used new cloud services during the pandemic and 40% took up cloud for the very first time, many firms don’t expect to carry this momentum forward.
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Half of respondents said their organization still struggles to match technical solutions to business problems and 47% claimed employees are resistant to change. As a result, only 50% expect to continue transforming once the pandemic subsides.
Speaking to TechRadar Pro, AWS UK VP Darren Hardman described the findings as a “wake up call for businesses.”
“Some organizations see transformation as a short-term endeavor to overcome short-term problems,” he said. “But constant reinvention will be required to align with a new set of customer demands as we move forward.”
Dangers of status quo
Broadly, AWS discovered business leaders feel the pandemic has had a net positive impact on their organization’s ability to adapt to change and tackle unexpected challenges.
Almost two thirds (65%) claimed their business is more agile, adaptable and confident about the future, with 65% of this group suggesting cloud helped them to pivot more quickly and 60% highlighting cost saving benefits.
However, the survey also highlighted a dangerous complacency among some firms. Although businesses that managed to weather the storm of the pandemic are now enjoying a “reinvention dividend”, AWS suggests change will need to become habitual for companies to survive in the new cloud-centric landscape.
“The status quo is the greatest danger, not the change businesses will need to undergo,” explained Hardman. “The reinvention culture that has taken hold in many organizations is going to bring a challenge to traditional businesses.”
“It’s not just about technology, but also about having the right leadership, right goals and right skills within an organization so as to avoid natural blockers for change.”
According to AWS, companies unable to sustain momentum or unwilling to commit to transformation in the long term will face increasing pressure on multiple fronts; from more agile competitors, more demanding customers and new entrants to the market.
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Joel Khalili is the News and Features Editor at TechRadar Pro, covering cybersecurity, data privacy, cloud, AI, blockchain, internet infrastructure, 5G, data storage and computing. He's responsible for curating our news content, as well as commissioning and producing features on the technologies that are transforming the way the world does business.