Information Technology – Insights from The Hackett Group’s 2022 Key Issues Study

By Christopher Key and Mike Spires
February 15, 2022
Season 3, Episode 7

Senior Director Chris Key talks with Principal Michael Spires about key findings from The Hackett Group’s 2022 Technology Key Issues research, which identifies priorities and potential challenges for technology organizations.


Show Notes

Welcome to the Hackett Group’s Business Excelleration Podcast, where – week after week – we hear from experts on how to avoid obstacles, manage detours, and celebrate milestones on the journey to world-class performance. This episode of the podcast is hosted by The Hackett Group’s Senior Director Chris Key. His guest today is Mike Spires, Principal at the Hackett Group. The subject for today’s discussion is Hackett’s 2022 IT key issues study results.

Every fall, The Hackett Group reaches out to their constituents to get an idea of their goals and areas for improvement in the upcoming year. Over 300 companies were polled for the results of this study focusing on the technology aspects. The first objective this year is securing data and systems. This is an issue at the top of every technology executive’s list. Mike explains that a core feature of being a good steward of your resources is making sure your data is secure. Number two is effective strategic partnering. This process means optimizing the processes and skills to enable effective stakeholder partnering, necessary to succeed in our transformations. This is no longer a tactical role, Mike says, but is now a collaborative and strategic effort. A partnership mentality drives achievement all down the pipeline.

The third objective is maximizing the value of data. It is incumbent on our technology function to manage data for maximum utility. This isn’t just a one-time action, but rather an ongoing capability. Mike sees many organizations treat data as an enterprise asset part of an organizational construct. He stresses that how you schedule and treat staff, for instance, actually plays into operational efficiency. There are many dependencies built within this observation. Having the skills, business understanding of data and organizing talent all go hand in hand with getting value in your data.

Fourth is aligning technology, skills, and talent to the needs of the business. The ability to attract and maintain talent is more of a challenge than ever. To address this, Mike explains that Hackett is trying to instill an overall resourcing strategy which determines key skill gaps and how to build an ecosystem of internal hiring, external third party and independent contracting networks to best fill these gaps. The fifth objective is enterprising transformation to a more digital operating model. The reality is that most organizations need to accelerate their interfaces. Creating alignment within your own model and product teams who are truly embedded is an effective digital partnership going towards market. And, Mike adds, the better you are at doing this, the easier it is to retain the talent you already have.

Sixth is regarding the matured and industrialized analytics capability, which really unlocks insights and improves the speed and accuracy of decision making. The insight cycle begins with what we need to be doing as technologists and leads into the sources of data, how we’re doing analytics and who is the consumer. It is a continuous journey. Having the partnership, technology and functional teams aligned creates a sense of ownership on both sides. You can create models which adjust and adapt very quickly based on strength and both structured and unstructured guidance. Analytics gives the ability to drive better outcomes and business functions.

Seventh is enterprise cost efficiency improvement. For the first time, we’re hearing that FTEs and operating budgets will keep pace with the expected demand and workload volume. Customer and workforce models are being driven by technology, and many organizations are recognizing the need to invest in better technology to deliver. Eighth, organizations are expecting a faster time to value for their technology enabled initiatives. Agility, prioritization, discipline and driving out complexities are all crucial elements to achieve this. Complex environments drive cost at an alarming level. Mike expects the next shared transformation will be around technology coding and the ability to enable citizen coders.

Ninth is an engage from anywhere customer experience. This relates back to our end goal of customer-centricity. We need to have customizable experiences across all platforms. From Mike’s IT perspective, it’s all about creating an integrative experience. There is an additional emphasis on a work from home workforce. Finally, Mike offers a few key recommendations technology leaders should consider moving forward.


  • 0:53 – Welcome to this episode, hosted by Chris Key.
  • 1:06 – Introducing today’s discussion topic.
  • 2:33 – The top priority.
  • 3:50 – Effective strategic partnering.
  • 6:27 – Demand management
  • 9:03 – The issues of attracting and retaining talent.
  • 11:31 – Enterprising transformation to a more digital operating model.
  • 14:26 – The insight cycle.
  • 17:26 – Enterprise cost efficiency improvement.
  • 20:12 – Timeline of technology enabled initiatives.
  • 24:00 – Customer and employee experience.
  • 27:00 – Mike’s recommendations for technology leaders.