Many companies get caught up in the hype of new technologies that advertise as the next “big thing.” This can also be called the airport terminal affect, where executives will discover new technologies advertised on the terminal walls. Companies need to be cautious on not over committing resources to these new technologies. Committing to these technologies without first reviewing their strategy to understand the impact can cause for potentially significant loss of profits and potentially can lead to the company by going out of business.
On the other hand, if companies don’t adopt the correct technology for their environment it can cause for the company to be left behind. This has been seen and discussed in other articles with a number of examples from Blockbuster to Kodak that failed to adopt to new technologies that resulted in them becoming irrelevant in the market.
What companies need to focus on with new technologies is to investigate if new technology can supplement the organization’s current strategy. In my organization, we are currently reviewing a number of new technologies to help improve the efficiencies and lower costs. One review that may not be new to the development organizations, but adopting/developing a DevOps approach to the Database layer is something that is not very mature in the market. The technology fits within the culture by providing a low cost, high quality database solution and the capability will allow for a self-service ability for the customers looking to move database objects from one environment to another. This is a technology that will improve the capability of the organization and one that should continue to be reviewed. Another capability that we are reviewing is artificial intelligence capability for conducting routine activities. This is something that is new and a capability that we will need to perform in a lab environment to understand the impacts. The technology still matches the strategy, however without understanding the implications of the supporting the technology more research is needed to understand how it will function.
In the end, companies need to review new technology for a strategic fit. If the technology does not fit into the organization’s culture, the company shouldn’t adopt the technology and continue to look for other innovations to adopt. Without putting the technology against the strategy, there is a large risk that the wrong technology is being adopted, or the technology is being adopted too soon in the lifecycle.