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Conference Updates

October 20, 2020

Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo Americas: Day 2 Highlights

We are bringing you news and highlights from Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo, taking place this week virtually in the Americas. Below is a collection of the key announcements and insights coming out of the conference. You can read the highlights from Day 1 here.

On Day 2 from the conference, we are highlighting results from the Gartner 2021 CIO Agenda survey, why composable enterprises need antifragile strategies, and lessons on digital business acceleration in response to COVID-19. Be sure to check this page throughout the day for updates.

Key Announcements

Press releases and stories covering news from Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo Americas are listed below:

Signature Series: 2021 CIO Agenda: Rebuilding the Future

Presented by Andy Rowsell-Jones, Distinguished VP Analyst, Gartner 

COVID-19 is a human and public health tragedy with ongoing economic repercussions for all leaders. The question for CIOs and IT executives quickly became: How do I enable my enterprises to rebuild and reset their course after disruptions brought on by the pandemic? In his session, Andy Rowsell-Jones, Distinguished VP Analyst at Gartner, walked attendees through the results of the annual 2021 CIO Agenda survey.

Key Takeaways

  • “Nothing, yet everything, has changed for the CIO since the onset of COVID-19.”
  • “Top performing enterprises are prioritizing digital innovation and will come out of the pandemic stronger than their typical- and trailing-performing counterparts.”

  • “The 2021 Gartner CIO Agenda survey revealed 4 ways CIOs can make a difference in digital business acceleration and in long-term agility: 1) win differently, 2) unleash force multipliers, 3) banish drags and 4) redirect resources.”

  • “As new attack surfaces appear due to the shift to remote work, CIOs reported prioritizing investments in cybersecurity primarily, followed by business intelligence/analytics and cloud services.”  

  • “In 2021, CIOs must build on the momentum they created for their enterprises. The better CIOs perform for the business, the more the business will ask of them next year.”

    Learn more about the survey findings in the Gartner press release.

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Composable Businesses Need Antifragile Strategies

Presented by Dave Aron, Distinguished VP Analyst, Gartner 

In order to win in volatile times, composability needs to be aimed at the goal of becoming antifragile. Antifragility goes one step further than resilience, aiming to shape organizations to be even more valuable to stakeholders in uncertain times. In his session, Dave Aron, Distinguished VP Analyst at Gartner, explained antifragile strategies and how enterprises can get there.

Key Takeaways

  • “Enterprises by nature are fragile. Assumptions - for instance what customers want - are hardcoded in their structures and processes and contribute to enterprise fragility.”

  • “Resilience is essential, but the ideal state to be in is called antifragility.”

  • “Where fragility means suffering in times of disruption and uncertainty, and resilience means surviving, antifragility means actually doing better when things are uncertain and disrupted.”

  • “There are 3 major ways to become more antifragile: 1) generate options 2) decentralize and diversify 3) experiment. Each offer value, but also incur costs, which senior business leaders must weigh.”

  • “Every organization should have a portfolio of fear-, fact- and faith-based investments.”

  • “Assess and reassess the antifragility of each business domain quarterly during turbulent times, for example the ongoing pandemic, and annually during more stable times.”

Digital Business Acceleration in Response to COVID-19

Presented by Kristin Moyer, Distinguished VP Analyst, Gartner 

The pandemic and the associated global economic uncertainty has resulted in the acceleration of digital business. CEOs and Boards of Directors expect results fast, yet there is a small window of opportunity to achieve the required outcomes. In her session, Kristin Moyer, Distinguished VP Analyst at Gartner, laid out a pragmatic approach to answering the why, what, and how for digital business acceleration.

Key Takeaways

  • “The most important trend Gartner sees in the market right now is digital business acceleration.”

  • “COVID-19 has given CIOs the momentum to accelerate digital business in their enterprises, with 65% of CEOs and 69% of Boards reporting wanting to do so.”

  • “Speed up the digital process by using leadership hacks and defining what acceleration means to the organization.”

  • “During times of crisis, focus culture hacks on emotions: hope, pride, belonging and agency.”

  • “CEOs will use COVID-19 to redesign the business, but at a measured pace.” 

  • “Define digital acceleration along two lines: 1) digital catch up 2) build back differently.”

  • “In the end, sometimes you need to pause and slow down to accelerate. That’s what winning differently is all about.”

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