Issue 1: Not all customers are the same. Some require different solutions to optimize profitable growth.
Issue 2: Frontline proliferation challenges back end operations. The multiplicity of channels and touchpoints reaches a point where it overloads the back office.
Issue 3: Intensity of competition continues to increase. For virtually all industries, there now exists a global situation of excess capacity compared to customer need. It is increasingly difficult to differentiate from copycat competitors.
Issue 4: Outsourcing diminishes clout of market leadership. Outsourcing gives smaller competitors broad reach and end-to-end capabilities that weaken scale advantages.
Issue 5: Accelerating market change. Nothing stands still anymore. Rapid innovation, shorter product life cycles, increasing customer demand all make it harder to recover investments in technology.
Issue 6: Staff resistance to change. Someone’s ox always gets gored. Private personal structures and power relationships are upset and threatened when new technology moves in.
Issue 7: The fragile customer relationship. Change can upset or confuse customers and drive them into the arms of competition.
Issue 8: Solving the wrong problem. Solution mismatch may have been recurring for decades leaving a patchwork quilt of sub-optimized technologies.
Issue 9: Data incompatibly stored in too many places. Data resides in multiple sites, sometimes separated by global distances and typically on different platforms creates what seems like an insurmountably expensive and time consuming problem.
Issue 10: The silo effect. Less obvious, but sometimes more fatal, is the historical fact that most companies exist as discrete units, guarded by managers with little desire or willingness to share data residing within the silo.
Issue 11: Rapid technology change. The pace of change is a real booby trap, accompanied with real pressure to pick what is popular. The trap is sprung when such decisions turn out to be wrong … and wrong can kill careers and organizations.
Issue 12: Underestimated costs. While leveraging existing infrastructures is an ultimate and optimal goal, the attempt to hold cost down often comes with some surprising and unintended consequences.
Issue 13: The pressure for immediate results. Quarterly shareholder pressures often force managers to choose between actions with long-term and sustainable payout with those that promise more immediate short-term results.