Machine learning. Artificial Intelligence. Edge Computing. These are just a few of the numerous disruptive technologies that have the potential to revolutionize all facets of business operations, ranging from workforce efficiency to customer engagement to research and development efforts. But, as a recent InformationWeek article puts it, “The catch is that disruptive technologies are known to be both expensive and difficult to implement…Therefore, it’s important to remember that disruptive technologies are not for the faint of heart. Yet, if properly planned, a successful implementation can be a true game changer.”

Read on for what you can do to avoid some of the major pitfalls associated with disruptive technologies.

Find the right technical expertise

As with any implementation, one of the best ways to ensure success is by anticipating potential problems that are likely to arise. As the InformationWeek piece cautions, “It cannot be stressed enough that you have to have the right skillset from an IT architecture perspective when planning to integrate disruptive technologies into your infrastructure. This is often where failures happen because the right people aren’t involved at this stage of the game.” Finding the right combination of internal and external resources can be a time-intensive process, but this effort is often repaid with a successful technology implementation.

Timing is key

At the outset of any disruptive technology project, it’s important to research the proposed technology and determine if it can deliver what the business needs at its current level of maturity. It’s also critical that IT leaders assess the abilities of their staff and also the broader employee base, as these areas can factor into correctly timing an implementation. As part of this, it can be helpful to engage with third-party consultants for their feedback on these two areas, as well as other issues that could impact timing.

Risk can never be fully eliminated

As InformationWeek puts it, “The final point about eliminating risk from disruptive technologies is that it’s impossible to avoid all risk.” After all, nothing ventured leads to nothing gained. The important thing is to focus on removing as many obstacles as possible so that the risk is more calculated.

Disruptive technologies could be pivotal for many organizations as they seek to navigate a return to pre-pandemic profitability. To increase the likelihood of a successful implementation, it’s important that IT leaders are aware of common pitfalls—and how to avoid them—before moving forward with any proposed project.

To learn more, check out this recent APEX of Innovation post on rethinking the purpose of AI.