With 2023 in full swing, tech leaders everywhere might be feeling stretched thin. Caught between strategic activities that set the guideposts for your team and tactical “fire drills” that cannot be ignored, CIOs and CTOs alike must make room for the important while not neglecting the urgent. That is why FirstLight has compiled an executive guide titled Key Considerations Facing CIOs and CTOs in 2023 and Beyond that gathers together several relevant trends that should be on your radar and suggests pragmatic responses.

An interesting trend we identify in the guide is the “hype alphabet soup”. In it we group several up-and-coming technologies with the potential to change the way your department works, enhance user productivity, and improve customer engagement – or not yet. After all, not all great technologies in the news cycle are ready for prime time (or your enterprise may not be ready for them). When it comes to their tech stack, most companies don’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) on the leading edge.

Nascent technology adoption can be a roller coaster ride and must be done for the right reasons at the right time. Web3 promises to decentralize and make the web more secure by leveraging blockchain technology and token economics, but 2022 was not kind to the technology. Nearly $4 billion in crypto funds were lost across the Web3 ecosystem due to hacks and scams (which, to their credit, is half as bad as 2021). Doesn’t feel very safe right now, but the potential is still there. The metaverse is expected to add $5 trillion to the global economy by 2030, and could significantly improve your customer experience and engagement as well as creating amazing immersive meetings with colleagues. But will that happen for your company in 2023? Perhaps this is not the year.

That doesn’t mean that you should ignore it altogether. Sure, you don’t want to jump on the bandwagon and place a roadmap item before understanding the application and feasibility (ML/AI comes to mind); however, devoting some resources to promising technologies today will pay dividends in the near and long term. It might help with the ongoing employee retention and motivation problem if you give a rising star an interesting project. And having your people work on a proof of concept with specific use cases pertinent to your business can give you a better feeling of the virtues and current shortcomings of the technology AND ensure a successful launch when you decide the time is right. Who are the players? How much is real and how much is vaporware? What resources will your company need to devote (really) to this program if it is to succeed? Longer term, it will give you a better perspective to revisit “on hold” technologies once their ecosystems have matured.

As mentioned, this is one of the key considerations our team curated. Like what you read? For more insights, download the entire executive guide. We loaded it with a broad array of insights to help CIOs and CTOs hit the ground running in 2023 and beyond.