8 Challenges to the Connected Economy


As we illustrated in our last article Why Start Your Journey toward a Connected Future Now, the not-too-distant future for enterprises and customers requires a secure, intelligent network that connects new devices and data stores across boundaries. However, this is far from easy, and enterprises must address real challenges to progress toward this vision – some more than others.

Enterprises that have already begun the journey toward a connected future are starting to see minor and major obstacles. Here are eight of the most common ones:

  1. Connecting outside corporate boundaries. There is a current dearth of standardized methods and mechanisms for sharing data securely across organizations’ partner ecosystems of suppliers, contractors and other third-party providers. Organizations must jointly determine the appropriate methods to share information with one another.
  2. Data siloed within organizations. Without a proper data strategy, enterprise architecture and data management plan, organizations struggle to share data across their own teams.
  3. Monetization. When data is the core differentiator for a business, it must be conscious of what data it is able to share with other organizations and how these limits might impact monetization potential.
  4. Privacy and security. Organizations need to ensure the data they are sharing with others will remain secure when it is no longer under their own control. They also need to make sure that the data payloads they receive from others is trustworthy. Privacy and security should be central to both sending and receiving processes.
  5. Compliance. Shared data need to be well-understood and classified to remain compliant as organizations integrate their technology ecosystems to IoT devices and other technology that helps build a connected enterprise.
  6. Legacy technologies. Not all devices and systems have the capability to connect quickly and securely. Organizations need to manage this technical debt.
  7. Legal authority. Organizations must make sure they have the legal authority and protections in place for sharing data. This gets complicated with the multiple laws and regulations at global, national and local levels.
  8. Politics. With so many global organizations today, sharing data internally and externally often means exchanging data across countries. This brings its own set of challenges related to foreign policy, global sentiment and security.

This is not meant to be an exhaustive or prioritized list of challenges. It is very likely that the largest challenges remain to be seen as companies grow and problem solve. But despite challenges, enterprises are ramping up their investments in this space to drive what will surely be massive value to customers and a strong point of differentiation.

ISG helps companies envision their connected future and navigate the provider ecosystem to build a strategy for safe and agile data sharing. Contact us to discuss how your company can be more connected.


About the authors

Doug Glair

Doug Glair

Doug Glair is a Director in ISG’s cybersecurity practice. Doug is a cybersecurity and supply chain leader with remarkable background leading, designing, and operating large enterprise-wide cybersecurity and supply chain programs. Exceptional relationship builder and collaborator with proven ability to deliver improvements in cybersecurity risk posture using established standards, industry leading practices and ROI-driven controls.
Anay Nawathe

Anay Nawathe

Anay Nawathe is a Principal Consultant within ISG’s Digital Strategy and Solutions group focused on understanding organizations’ business needs and providing them with       well-informed technology solutions. Anay has a passion for emerging technologies and experience working in a broad range of business and technical roles. Through his diverse work experiences, Anay has developed the business mindset, technical acumen, and communications skills necessary to enable clients to effectively utilize digital solutions and innovate in their organizations.