The top 5 hurdles to business innovation, and how to avoid them

Successful digital transformation means companies must innovate to compete and disrupt their industry, according to a TIBCO report.

How to create a vision for digital transformation At the 2018 MIT Sloan CIO Symposium, Jeanne Ross of the MIT Sloan Center explained why 'digitized' is different from 'digital' in the enterprise.

Digital transformation efforts are underway at the majority of enterprises, as businesses seek out new technology-enabled products, services, and ways to get work done to compete in a global economy. However, implementing innovation comes with a fair share of hurdles to overcome, according to a Thursday report from TIBCO.

Even with top-of-the-line technology in place, organizations often struggle with change management when it comes to their people and company culture and implementing an innovation strategy, the report noted. However, these obstacles are easy to overcome once they are addressed head-on, it added.

SEE: Digital transformation: A guide for CXOs (Tech Pro Research)

Here are the top five obstacles to innovation in the enterprise, according to the 600 executives surveyed for the report:

  1. Limited time and resources (13%)
  2. Limited or no budget (11%)
  3. Security concerns (10%)
  4. Lacking new skill sets (9%)
  5. User acceptance/adoption (7%)

How to avoid digital transformation hurdles

Here are some tips to avoid these innovation obstacles, according to the report:

  • Cultural changes

Culture changes can help solve the top two obstacles of limited time and resources, as well as limited budget, the report noted. If a company does not have an innovative culture in place, leadership will not align resources and budgets to further drive that innovation, the report noted. Some tactics to overcome these hurdles include making sure executives have innovation top of mind, rewarding creative solutions from employees, and setting aside budgets and resources to fund new projects.

  • Technology changes

Implementing the right technologies will address the security concerns challenge by allowing for more agility, openness, and protection, the report said. Tactics for addressing tech challenges include replacing legacy technology with a modern technology stack, integrating new technologies to work with current systems, and leveraging big data and/or the cloud into business operations.

  • People changes

You can help employees who feel they lack the necessary digital skills, or don't want to adopt new technologies, by embracing a strategy that views people as assets, the report said. This may include skill building and education, collaborating across teams, funding research and development, and appointing expert teams to take point on certain projects.

"Not all hope is lost if you have identified obstacles with your people, technology, and culture," the report stated. "Avoid these hurdles by strategically enabling all three. With these critical components working in conjunction with one another, you are sure to create an innovation strategy that is bound to help you be the one to beat in your industry."

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Image: iStockphoto/Andrey Popov

By Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.