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Technical debt hindering digital transition in EMEA, says Red Hat survey
Tue, 27th Feb 2024

The findings from Red Hat's 10th Global Tech Trends survey have identified technical debt as the chief barricade to digital transformation for companies within Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Alarmingly, 28% of those surveyed pinpointed their accumulated technical debt as the major obstacle in progressing their digital evolution.

In addition to considering difficulties encountered during digital transformation, the survey investigated where these organisations stand in their journey towards such a paradigm shift, their funding priorities, and the present state of cloud technology. Over 700 IT leaders around the globe, spanning a range of industries and regions, participated in gathering this data.

Survey results revealed a dearth of suitably qualified individuals as another significant barrier to successful digital transformation, with just under one in four respondents (24%) highlighting talent gaps as the main issue. This underscores the importance of digital skills in our increasingly tech-focused world.

Red Hat's research also investigated cloud usage among IT managers in the EMEA region. From their respective apps (excluding SaaS), 47% are on-premise, 40% inhabit a hybrid cloud environment, and a mere 12% reside within the public cloud. The rationale for these choices is insightful; concerns around data privacy and security typically underpin the decision for on-premise configurations.

At the same time, cost-benefit and technology preference primarily motivate the utilisation of the public cloud. The survey also indicated that most respondents currently have less than 40% of their workflows containerised, albeit with an anticipated increase over the coming year.

When queried on budget allocation, the priorities for EMEA IT managers reflect the modern pressures of handling data and digital technology. Just over six in ten (62%) leaders prioritised effective cloud management, whilst a little over one-third (35%) are focusing on data centre consolidation. Finally, optimising cloud spending was identified as a key goal by 32% of respondents.

The motivation behind these funding priorities primarily sought to enhance organisational security and efficiency. Almost half (43%) of EMEA's IT leaders argue that investments are designed to achieve better security and data protection. Meanwhile, four in ten (42%) aimed their financial commitments at improving overall efficiencies.

In conclusion, a spotlight on security was also reflected in the funding priorities of EMEA IT leaders. Network security emerged as the top financial priority, being crucial for 36% of respondents. At the same time, threat intelligence, detection, and response were a close second (35%), followed by vulnerability management, which was important to 30%.