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Conference Updates

November 10, 2020

Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo EMEA: Day 2 Highlights

We are bringing you news and highlights from Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo, taking place this week virtually in EMEA. 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 key results from the Gartner 2021 CIO Agenda survey, and sessions on the key strategies and technologies needed to position the retail store as the center for unified commerce, and how CIOs can make product management a key part of their organizations digital future. Be sure to check this page throughout the day for updates.

Key Announcements

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.”

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The Retail Store Is Mission Control for Unified Commerce

Presented by Joanne Joliet, Senior Director Analyst, Gartner

The retail store plays the same role as ground control for space operations. It serves as a  central command of activity and is ultimately responsible for the success of the mission. Joanne Joliet, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, explored key strategies and technologies needed to position the physical store as the convergence point for digital and physical assets and deliver out of this world customer experience.

Key Takeaways

  • “Even as online retail increased by 44% during the COVID-19 pandemic, physical retail stores are indispensable. 61% of shoppers prefer to return online orders to stores, which makes retail stores a key component of a retailer’s overall success.”
  • “Retail CIOs need to focus on four elements in their unified commerce strategy. They are 1) Telemetry 2) Commanding 3) Staffing 4) Analysis and Support.”

  • “To establish retail stores as mission control, CIOs need to 1) Reset expectations 2) Connect all physical stores 3) Enable digital dexterity amongst associates 4) Operate intelligently 5) Anticipate the unexpected.”

  • “Stores need to be connected to reduce data latency and provide situational awareness. Smart checkout, robotic process automation, algorithmic retailing, contextualized real time pricing, conversational commerce are some of the technologies that can help achieve unified commerce.”

  • “Retailers who create fluidity and flexibility by building a unified commerce ecosystem, will be the ones who succeed.”

The CIO’s Digital Product Management Game Plan for 2021

Presented by Brian Prentice, VP Analyst, Gartner

If anything has been learnt over the first half of 2020, it has been the importance of having a compelling digital connection with internal stakeholders. This means that CIOs should make digital product management a key part of their 2021 efforts. In his session, Brian Prentice, VP Analyst at Gartner, provided keys to understanding digital product management.

Key Takeaways

  • “A lot of the lockdowns that came from COVID-19 mean that digital is really one of the only ways that customers can interact with organizations.”

  • “Going into 2021, 83% of CIOS are telling us that there is going to be a continued demand for digital products and services.” 

  • “The pandemic impacted the expectations and comfort levels customers have engaging organizations digitally.”

  • “Digital product management (DPM) success involves the integration of three capabilities - product management, product development and digital design. This is called the DPM trio.”

  • CIOs have a critical management role to play ensuring the tight integration between the functions of the DPM trio.

  • “There are four external product types - enabler product, product category, external digital asset and platform product.” 

  • “Each product type will have its own game plan for success.”

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