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Is SMAC Good Enough to Meet the Demands of the New Digital World?

SMAC can really unfold into a myriad of great opportunities if organizations invest and deploy ‘integrated SMAC solutions’

According to a recent KPMG report, SMAC, or Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud Computing, comprises around 80% of total ICT (Information & Communications Technology) spend. SMAC is not only promising a modern way for enterprises to leverage information technology, but it's also revolutionizing the way business will be done in the future. However, getting there is not as easy as S, M, A, and C. Enterprises need to fully understand the power and potential of these technology areas in order to make sense of their intended dominance in the next few years ahead. The values SMAC elements really offer are:

  • Social - Ecosystem Collaboration and Listening Capability
  • Mobile - Reach and Appeal
  • Analytics - Insights and Rapid Action Empowerment
  • Cloud - Fast-track GTM, Scale, and New Service Models

The benefits SMAC offers to businesses - to build and leverage next-gen products and deliver desired experiences to users - are phenomenal and equally transformational. But there is the danger that SMAC is a panacea for all enterprise technology ills that can create a false sense of hope only to cause nightmares later down the road.

Without having the right digital strategy and a growth mindset, ‘SMACing' it into newer ways to deliver services could end up meaning one of the following scenarios:

  • Creating a reach for your product offering, but failing to listen to your stakeholders (in particular, what is not being said about it)
  • Creating an appeal for your service, but not scaling enough to have consistent service
  • Getting the right user insights, but failing to respond and roll out new features quickly
  • Building for unforeseen scale, but missing the opportunity to deliver the right experience
  • Listening to customers, but not getting an action plan rolled out in a timely fashion or when it matters most

Situations like these could arise, no matter how much investments have gone into it, if SMAC technologies are put to use in isolation. Knowing SMAC and implementing it to solve a particular business problem without having a right experience could mean:

  • An organization attempts a piecemeal shot at next-gen strategy
  • Sideway offerings or partially addressed product roadmap
  • Lost new-product opportunities, no or less innovation
  • Retrofitted cost and concerns
  • Missed opportunities to provide a differentiated experience for end-users

To avoid these pitfalls and blunders and also to ensure being the most relevant in the future, it is important that organizations first develop the "amalgamated design attitude" before re-imagining their products, offerings or market scenarios. This in turn could mean first creating a compelling product story that weaves in:

  • Business circumstances and challenges
  • Customers, partners and channels
  • End users, their environments, and changing behaviors
  • Engagement, experience, and value system
  • Unforeseen demands, rapid learning, and digital ecosystems

All this is possible - while mostly being overlooked by many product and enterprise organizations - by what we refer to as IDETing, meaning ‘Integrated-Design-Thinking'. This skill, of course, is not something an organization can acquire over a few months or so. It requires developing a product development DNA, perfected design methodologies, leveraging the experience of wide SMAC technology implementations, and a consultative attitude - that brings heterogeneity to a cohesive customer solution fulfilling future promises of selling smart dreams.

SMAC offers good opportunities and it can really unfold into a myriad of great opportunities if organizations invest and deploy ‘integrated SMAC solutions' developed using speciality design offerings - to cater to the unforeseen demands of the New Digital World.

‘The whole is greater than the sum of its parts' - Aristotle. So true.

More Stories By Jiten Patil

Jiten Patil is Principal Technology Consultant & Cloud Expert, CTO Office, at Persistent Systems Limited, a global leader in software product development and services. He has 15 years of industry experience and has spent the past 6 years working with cloud service providers, ISVs and enterprises in the field of SaaS, IaaS, PaaS and hybrid cloud computing solutions. His key expertise is in guiding organizations for cloud strategy and roadmap, solution architecting for public & private application services, platform services, multi-tenancy methodologies, application enablement and migration, devising new cloud solutions, tools and IP products, and doing competitive assessment across cloud technologies. He can be reached at Jitendra_Patil@persistent.co.in / Twitter @jiten_patil

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