Investing for resilience: how will companies spend on tech in 2022?

Our latest WORKTECH Wednesday Briefing looks at where technology investments will be made in 2022, and looks ahead to the upcoming WORKTECH Los Angeles and Smart Buildings conferences

During the global pandemic, many organisations significantly upped their investment in emerging technologies and digital solutions which claimed to provide agility, flexibility and speed for employees while working from home.

Now, however, a new report by Gartner suggests that the demand for new digital workplace technologies has levelled off in 2021 compared to 2020.

Gartner’s report, ‘Emerging Technology Roadmap for Large Enterprises in 2021-2023’, suggests that this plateau can be attributed to maturing responses to the pandemic. Only 12 per cent of digital workplace technologies have moved ahead in the adoption cycle in 2021, compared with 41 per cent in 2020.

As organisations plan their investments for 2022, where are business leaders placing their money for digital infrastructure? The Gartner report outlines 12 key findings based on responses from IT professionals from 437 organisations.

‘The narrative is changing from investment for agility to investment for resilience…’

In 2020, organisations were looking to improve their adaptability and agility through digital technologies. Two-thirds of respondents to the Gartner survey (66 per cent) cited ‘increasing speed and agility’ as their main justification for investment in emerging technologies.

Now, the narrative is changing. Looking ahead to 2022, the research suggests that the need for resilience is driving the business case for the majority of emerging technology deployments. A clear majority of enterprises (64 per cent) are looking to deploy emerging technologies to meet the objective of ‘enhanced resilience’. This data suggests that the response to the pandemic has shifted from reactive to future forecasting.

Talent shortage

One of the other key findings from the report is that a shortage of talent is a rising and significant challenge for the successful adoption of emerging technologies. The impact of the ‘Great Resignation’ is already being demonstrated, as this year 64 per cent of respondents feel that talent availability is the largest challenge to emerging technology adoption, compared with just four per cent in 2020 and 14 per cent in 2019.

Investing in hybrid

Digital equality is another key challenge for organisations as they plot their strategy for hybrid work in 2022 and beyond. Infrastructure and operations leaders are creating distributed platforms, supported by cloud technologies, that can enable an ‘anywhere operations’ model for employees.

These platforms allow the smooth movement of work environments and information between physical and virtual locations. In 2022, there will be substantial investment in technologies that enable a truly hybrid approach to work. Organisations will invest heavily in creating a strong hybrid cloud base, supported by several multi-cloud technologies.

AI steps up

As organisations forge their digital roadmap, 2022 could be the year where substantial investment is made in intelligent data and analytics capabilities, according to the Gartner report. Throughout 2021, technologies have been deployed to accommodate the changing landscape of work – this has seen greater emphasis on artificial intelligence (AI) cloud services, AI operation platforms, and data science and machine learning platforms. Next year will see the rise of intelligent automation for infrastructure managed services, blockchain platforms and IoT platforms are in the pilot stage this year.

Learning from events

On the subject of digital workplace technologies, WORKTECH’s annual Smart Buildings conference is returning to London on Tuesday 7 December at Southworks – the first building in the UK to be awarded the Platinum Smart Building Certification.

The conference will review what smart technologies are being adopted by companies globally and how they will enable future workplace strategies. Session highlights include a case study from EDGE Technologies, an in-depth look into the UKs smartest building – Southworks, and a keynote session from BCG’s Kristi Woolsey on organisational value in smart environments.

Secure your SMARTBUILDINGS21 London ticket here.

Across the Atlantic, WORKTECH will present its Los Angeles conference on Thursday 9th December. This event features an impressive line-up of international thought-leaders from Studio O+A, Gensler, PwC, IBM, Zwift, Boston Consulting Group and more. Book your place at WORKTECH21 Los Angeles here.

In our WORKTECH Wednesday Briefings, we reach out to our 10,000-plus Academy members, WORKTECH attendees, speakers, partners and sponsors while WORKTECH’s professional conference series continues through our in-person, virtual and hybrid platforms. This edition is posted 24 November 2021.
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