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Digital Transformation Crunch Time

Achieving Required Operational Speeds

Consumer behaviors are changing at speeds never before seen in many industries, which is impacting how businesses operate and bring products to market. In fact, more than a dozen retailers have closed this year as a result of having business and IT systems, and supply chains that are unable to meet the speed requirements of digital consumers. Most companies report they have 
IT systems in their inventory that are too slow or incapable of supporting real-time digital consumers.  That spells trouble.  Consumer and competitive changes are forcing enterprises to rethink their strategies in order to speed up in just about all areas: R&D, manufacturing, distribution, marketing, and sales.

Enterprises that I speak with today seem to understand that the need for digital transformation is being driven by advances in mobile technologies, automation, cloud computing, sensors, big data analytics and artificial intelligence.   They realize they must upgrade their IT systems and business processes to accommodate these changes and increase the speed of their operations.  They are also focused on how to improve their agility and flexibility, so they are nimble enough to respond to changing consumer behaviors, tastes and new competitors.  Many companies today find themselves in a position where their past investments in IT systems, that once provided competitive advantages, are now anchors preventing them from moving into the future.

Achieving real-time operational speeds is required to support real-time digital interactions and experiences.  Supporting these real-time experiences is more than just a technology issue, it requires companies to support real-time analytics, decision-making and business operational tempos. An operational tempo,
 in the context of this article, is defined as the speed or pace of business operations. Achieving a faster operational tempo is a significant challenge for many.  This is why we are seeing more applications of real-time analytics, automation and artificial intelligence.

Changing an enterprise's operational tempo requires strong leadership that can transform the entire organization. It often requires significant IT updates and upgrades, organizational changes, and reengineering business processes and decision-making matrixes to align with real-time demands.

The biggest challenge for legacy companies today, is how to move to real-time. On the 20th of July I will be leading an online discussion with the CIO WaterCooler on "Sequencing Digital Technologies for Competitive Advantages Over the Next 40 Months of Digital Transformation".

At my Digital Boardroom we will be discussing that we (consumers) have all changed as a result of digital and mobile technologies and platforms. Enterprises must now follow and transform, in order to support these changes and compete fast enough to matter. If you agree with this premise, then an important question to ask is what sequence should digital technologies be implemented in order to maximize the ROI from digital transformation investments? Another important question is what enterprise business and IT doctrines should guide organizations through this transformation. These important questions and others will be discussed, and research findings shared. (Digital Boardrooms typically take approx. 45min)
If you're a CIO or an IT leader and you'd like to participate you can register here: https://ciowatercooler.co.uk/digital-boardrooms/'

More Stories By Kevin Benedict

Kevin Benedict is an opinionated Senior Analyst at Cognizant's Center for the Future of Work, SAP Mentor Alumnus, speaker, writer, and mobile and digital strategies expert. He is a popular keynote speaker, and in the past three years he has shared his insights into mobile and digital strategies with companies in 17 different countries. He has over 30 years of experience working with enterprise applications, and he is a veteran mobile industry executive. He wrote the Forward to SAP Press' bestselling book on enterprise mobility titled Mobilizing Your Enterprise with SAP, and he has written over 3,000 articles.

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