Do you know this joke that is circulating on the Internet? “Of these three words starting with -C, which one has accelerated the digital transformation the most in recent months? Answer 1: the CEO, answer 2: the CIO, or answer 3 … the Covid-19? »If you chose answer 3, you are right! Sure, it’s humor, but humor rooted in reality. The pandemic will be remembered for many reasons, including its undeniable impact on accelerating business transformation.
The Covid-19 has pushed companies to accelerate their digital transition this year. Merchants with physical outlets were forced to switch to e-commerce overnight, to avoid bankruptcy. Traditional restaurants have fallen back on take-away sales, and entire supply chains have been reorganized from A to Z. Cafes have had to close their doors, while manufacturers of bicycles, coffee machines and home sports equipment are experiencing an unprecedented peak in activity.
The world is changing at an unprecedented rate. For large companies that need a little more time to adjust, the clock is ticking. Before the arrival of the pandemic, IDC estimated that 60% of global GDP would be digitized by 2022. While digital transformation has always been a strategic business mission, it is vital to complete it as quickly as possible.
Know where to start
Businesses rely on their business systems that are essential to the running of their operations. These systems are irreplaceable because they are the key to their operational success and, generally, to their income-generating activities. By realizing the invaluable value of reliable technologies, IT managers can leverage this advantage as part of their digital transformation project. Savvy CIOs seek to leverage and scale the assets that matter most to build their infrastructure of tomorrow.
Strategic change is not a quick or targeted initiative: it is a global project. Therefore, it makes sense to leverage assets that have been useful in the past, while deploying new technologies that maximize returns on investment, minimize risk, and deliver new sources of value.
Modernization as an ideal vector
It can be reassuring to think of the digital transition as a one-off activity with a predefined outcome, but the reality is quite different. This type of project is not limited to a single well-defined course. It requires going through different stages, each with a specific objective, challenges and resources. Faced with a multitude of factors, technologies and possible approaches, the risk of failure is unfortunately high, given the number of variables. To limit risk, these variables must be reduced using proven approaches, processes and technologies.
Modernizing systems is one of the keys to success. Modernizing means reusing what is already working well to create something new. It is the ideal vector. In contrast, companies wishing to shed their proven technologies and start from scratch may find it more difficult. Several studies have shown that these projects too often tend to end in stinging failures.
Over time, these different modernization paths will align to form a larger whole. It is a strategic ambition that avoids abrupt changes threatening business continuity and targets the three challenges of transformation: applications, processes and infrastructure.
The three Musketeers
Regardless of the path chosen, the basic elements of successful change programs are never far from the foreground and focus on the usual factors: people, processes and technology
Men: any major change must be supported by a set of people. By transforming itself, the company is heading towards unknown lands. It must therefore join forces with a trusted partner who has already successfully completed more than a thousand projects over three decades, supported by a robust ecosystem of partners and ready to implement the full extent of the required modernization solution. .
Process : digital transformation is a competitiveness initiative. Whatever your destination, you have to reach it as quickly as possible. In this context, it is vital to have an effective transformation framework based on modern Agile and DevOps best practices. These should use approaches like automated testing, CI / CD, useful service remanufacturing, APIs, and IDEs to accelerate application release.
Technology: Trusted systems are an essential pillar of a transformation process and it is necessary to ensure that the technologies one deploys to carry out these changes meet the needs of today and tomorrow. It is therefore necessary to rely on integrated tool chains that make it possible to collaborate, connect and create new services, while testing and rapidly deploying services when needed (in the cloud, in containers, in mainframe systems or on mobile).
For today’s businesses, digital transformation has become a strategic necessity. Fundamental changes are inevitable and wise change imperative, but the transition is not without risk and modernizing IT operations is a complex project. The onset of the pandemic has given new impetus to change initiatives, but to transform, companies need to be disciplined.