Gartner predicts that by 2020, 75% of enterprises will transform to digital — or at least be preparing for the change. Unfortunately, only 30% of those attempts will be successful. As more and more businesses get involved with digitization, it is now essential to have a well-planned digital transformation strategy in place than ever before. Today’s enterprises must maintain reliability to ensure customer experience, uptime, security and compliance, while also seeking agility to enter new markets and remain competitive. With digital technologies affecting all walks of business, companies must transform themselves with digital to become ready for the future. Enterprise digital transformation is a complex process that requires the right mix of business and technology strategy. While most of the companies would agree that they are involved in some form of digital transformation solutions, getting the balance right has been a chronic issue that enterprises must solve.
Truth is enterprise digital transformation is not an isolated project that can be restricted just to the IT department. Digital transformation solutions transcend the traditional departmental boundaries. It affects the entire organization as a whole. It is a cultural shift that requires serious board room discussions. Digital transformation means different things to different companies. You need to understand what is the digital vision of your enterprise can aspire for. You may need to undergo a digital transformation consulting exercise to identify where you are and where you want to be. The organizations need to understand the intrinsic value that can be derived out of this exercise to make progress. There are digital transformation companies that help drive enterprise digital transformation. For example, at Sonata with our proprietary Platformation™ approach, we help our customers create a shared digital vision for the enterprise with a clear digital roadmap which is practical and executable.
We now have a raft of new, disruptive technologies ranging from Artificial Information (AI) to chat box to analytics to Robotic Process Automation (RPA), all of which collectively promise a massive breakthrough in performance. But enterprise must build capabilities around these technologies with a reference framework that works for them. Born digital’ companies such as Amazon, Airbnb, Uber, and Alibaba have built multi-billion dollar business at a never-before-seen speed in the corporate world by leveraging these technologies. In achieving this, they fundamentally disrupted many traditional industries and posed a serious challenge to some of the long-established companies in the field.
Traditional enterprises must adopt the learnings from these new digital players to remain relevant and competitive. If you look under the hood of these born-digital companies, you would find that they have a very different approach to business. They have what you can call a platform-based business model. It’s an ecosystem driven model that engages vendors, partners, and customers in a non-linear fashion as opposed to a linear demand and supply in a traditional ‘pipe’ structure. This is the only way enterprises can future proof themselves against the constant digital disruption that will come in the way. With a platform based approach, enterprises become, open, scalable, connected and intelligent and business leaders need to move quickly to adopt this platform advantage.
The first step is to have an understanding of the current digital maturity of the enterprise. It is the starting point of your digital transformation program. For example, at Sonata we have developed a complimentary digital maturity assessment framework that provides you with an in-depth analysis of your current digital maturity. Our 7 steps digital transformation methodology helps enterprises chart their digital journey with help of the organizations’ strength and immediate digital priorities. The short assessment considers your business model, products and services as well as your processes. It’s the starting point for your individual digital transformation.
It is time that for proactive business leaders, all significant new innovation initiatives be seen through a lens of platform-based business and technology models. Any effort launched as standalone, isolated or point interventions will have a limited shelf-life and potentially give a false sense of comfort in being prepared for the emerging digital economy. Since this is easier said than done, the key to successful digital transformation is to have a concept like ‘Platformation’ — in order to provide the road map that is required to get there. Successful digital business can only be built on a robust framework like ‘Platformation’ that appropriately combines the business and technology foundations needed to make a fundamental impact.