Gartner predicted that by 2026, 70% of multinational companies will adjust the countries in which they operate by hedging to reduce their geopolitical exposure. According to Gartner, Chief Information Officers (CIOs) have a central role to play in assessing business risks and, if necessary, re-architecting digital systems.
The analyst warned that CIOs can no longer rely on the availability of the technology used by the company for its operations in all the countries where it operates, and will likely be faced with restricted and mandated vendors.
To minimize disruption, Gartner recommended that CIOs establish a Center of Excellence to assess technology vendor risk, tasked with regularly assessing key vendors’ exposure to changing government restrictions.
Beyond potential restrictions on enterprise software, Gartner warned that national competition for corporate governance control cyberspace will impact operations multinational companies.
As digital technology weaves itself into all aspects of society, Gartner pointed out that nations seek to ensure that their own technologies reflect and support their core values and their citizens. Governments increasingly conclude that they need a protected national digital infrastructure.
The machinations of governments to control the governance of cyberspace escape the influence of CIOs, but they will have profound impacts on a company’s ability to operate internationally. CIOs can advance the leadership team’s understanding of the transnational competition for control of cyberspace and the impacts on their business operations by conducting an annual cyberspace environment briefing.
Gartner urged CIOs to ensure that the IT department’s operating model and practices reflect applicable laws and regulations. In this regard, Gartner said the role of the CIO is to be aware of the legal environment and explain to other executives how the IT organization supports compliance across the enterprise.
The fact that governments around the world are publicly committing to develop digital skills and encouraging tech startups to develop domestic tech capabilities offers CIOs a way to harness local expertise and government-backed co-innovation support.
Brian Prentice, Gartner Fellow, said, “Digital geopolitics is now one of the most disruptive trends CIOs have to contend with, with many now dealing with commercial disputes, legislation from a country that has a impact on global operations and government restrictions on acquisition and use. of digital technology. They need to familiarize themselves with this new reality and prepare for its impact.