Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Zakia Bouachraoui, Elizabeth White, William Schmarzo, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Mobile IoT, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, @DXWorldExpo, @ThingsExpo

@DevOpsSummit: Article

What Is #DigitalTransformation? | @CloudExpo #Cloud #IoT #M2M #BigData

Tips for planning a successful digital transformation in your company

Image credit: The Mack Institue

In the rush to compete in the digital age, a successful digital transformation is essential, but many organizations are setting themselves up for failure. There's a common misconception that the process is just about technology, but it's not. It's about your business. It shouldn't be treated as an isolated IT project; it should be driven by business needs with the committed involvement of a range of stakeholders.

The benefits are clear
Companies that have embraced digital transformation and reached digital maturity are reaping the rewards already. They are 26% more profitable than their industry competitors, according to Capgemini's report, The Digital Advantage. But increased profit is not a foregone conclusion and digital transformation is not without risk.

Digging into the potential upside, most C-level executives and IT budget holders surveyed by Fujitsu in Walking the digital tightrope, agree on four key benefits:

  • The attraction and retention of a talented workforce
  • Business responsiveness to the market
  • Customer retention and loyalty
  • Increased workforce productivity

Successful digital transformation encompasses these internal and external aspects, and they must be progressed in parallel.

A dangerous disconnect
It's interesting to note that 92% of the IT decision-makers surveyed by Fujitsu classed their organizations as somewhat or extremely mature with regards to digital maturity, and two-thirds saw themselves as digital leaders. Contrast that with the troubling revelation that 70% feel digital projects are a gamble and the admission that 65% feel their digital projects are not aligned.

This lack of alignment has to be tackled. The pressure to dive in is immense and it may be leading some businesses to task CIOs with ill-conceived and poorly supported projects that have a high chance of failure. Look before you leap. A steady approach requires more planning, with careful integration of legacy infrastructure.

It's also worth remembering that the drive to transform isn't all about the carrot, there's plenty of concern about the stick, in the shape of fears about a reduction in productivity and a decrease in revenue. One CEO remarked, "The risk of investing in incorrect technologies is lower than doing nothing and slipping behind the competition."

How do you build confidence?
Step back and look at how technology can deliver more, both internally and externally, to drive your success. Listen to your employees. Try on your customer's shoes. Think creatively about what could improve organizational efficiency and the consumer experience. Encourage creative brainstorming and welcome ideas from all quarters to build a picture of what's really important to your business, as opposed to improving technology for the sake of it. Try to get ahead of the disruption.

Secure early and committed involvement from business stakeholders, including representatives from across the lines of your business and also the support services. The CIO may act as informer of the group, but without input from finance and HR, and other departments, you won't have a complete view of what your business truly is or how technology can change it.

Finding the right mix
One potential route to ensure that the technology you adopt is going to deliver business benefits is to allow business to go direct to the market and find the service or application that meets their needs. CIOs can set frameworks to maintain security and compliance, while granting the business end more flexibility. Find the expertise you need and build partnerships to maintain a secure foundation. Something like Citrix Workspace Suite can provide secure access to business applications, enabling rapid internal change as you test out new ideas and services.

You may also want to split the IT department. Set up soft IT, tasked with trying things and finding out if they work, and failing fast when they don't. You'll also need robust IT to ensure that your existing environment continues to run properly. Rotate operational staff onto these teams and give them the opportunity to work on different projects to keep motivation levels high.

It's important to move fast, but be careful to handle this organizational challenge sensitively and make sure that you carry some of the robust operational efficiency and effectiveness over into your new projects. Work towards striking the right balance in terms of your team, combining old and new, encompassing business needs across departments, and focusing equally on internal and external requirements. Look beyond the technology, and identify what digital transformation can bring to your business.

More Stories By Karyn Jeffery

Karyn Jeffery is VP and Head of End User Services in Fujitsu's Managed Infrastructure Services Global Delivery unit. She leads the globalization of Fujitsu’s offerings in end user computing. Contact her at [email protected].

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
IoT is rapidly becoming mainstream as more and more investments are made into the platforms and technology. As this movement continues to expand and gain momentum it creates a massive wall of noise that can be difficult to sift through. Unfortunately, this inevitably makes IoT less approachable for people to get started with and can hamper efforts to integrate this key technology into your own portfolio. There are so many connected products already in place today with many hundreds more on the h...
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
Charles Araujo is an industry analyst, internationally recognized authority on the Digital Enterprise and author of The Quantum Age of IT: Why Everything You Know About IT is About to Change. As Principal Analyst with Intellyx, he writes, speaks and advises organizations on how to navigate through this time of disruption. He is also the founder of The Institute for Digital Transformation and a sought after keynote speaker. He has been a regular contributor to both InformationWeek and CIO Insight...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
To Really Work for Enterprises, MultiCloud Adoption Requires Far Better and Inclusive Cloud Monitoring and Cost Management … But How? Overwhelmingly, even as enterprises have adopted cloud computing and are expanding to multi-cloud computing, IT leaders remain concerned about how to monitor, manage and control costs across hybrid and multi-cloud deployments. It’s clear that traditional IT monitoring and management approaches, designed after all for on-premises data centers, are falling short in ...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...