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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 futurist, Principal Analyst at the Center for Digital Intelligence™, C4DIGI.com, emerging technologies analyst, and digital transformation and business strategy consultant. In the past 8 years he has taught workshops for large enterprises and government agencies in 18 different countries, and is a keynote speaker at conferences worldwide. He spent nearly 5 years working as a Senior Analyst at Cognizant (CTSH), and 2 years serving in Cognizant's Center for the Future of Work where he wrote many reports, hundreds of articles, interviewed technology experts, and produced videos on the future of digital technologies and their impact on industries. He has written articles published in The Guardian, wrote the Forward to SAP Press' book titled "Mobilizing Your Enterprise with SAP", published over 3,000 articles and was featured as thought leader and digital strategist in the Department of Defense's IQT intelligence journal. Kevin lectures and leads workshops, teaches and consults with companies and government agencies around the world to help develop digital transformation and business strategies. Visit his website at C4DIGI.com.

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