CIO magazine is usually a good place to explore future trends that will affect the global IT industry and right at the end of 2016 they published a good list of issues affecting IT outsourcing. We are already a month or so into 2017, but it’s still worth taking a look at this list of ten key trends that anyone in the IT outsourcing area needs to be aware of.
From the ten, the three that really stood out for me were:
1. Security; more than ever, security is a major concern. Companies can fail because of security breaches and with links between companies under scrutiny this requires a strategy that explores people, processes, and technology.
2. Automation; more services are being delivered automatically and more customers will expect to see IT costs reduced with an increased delivery because of automation.
3. Cloud; it’s about far more than just raw power and storage. Entire critical services are now cloud-based and it’s becoming unusual for companies to want anything other than a cloud-based solution now.
The CIO list also suggested that IT suppliers will pivot and start offering additional services, such as consulting, but I would suggest that this is just part of a wider change taking place.
We are moving on from a traditional client and supplier type outsourcing arrangement to partnership or co-sourcing. I know that suppliers have talked for years about partnership, but I mean genuine partnership where the contract between companies is not strictly about what can be delivered, it includes provisions for how to innovate and how to make the deliveries better. If the two companies start working together, rather than one just selling a service to the other, then we are no longer talking about pivoting services, there is the potential to build new products and services together – as if the two companies are functioning as one.
That’s going to be one of the biggest changes in IT outsourcing in 2017 and I’ll comment more on how this might work in one of my next blogs.