Friday, August 5, 2016

Three Dimensions of IT Digital Transformation

The digital world is so data-driven and information-intensive, technology needs will only expand, and most likely expand hyperbolically.

IT plays a more significant role in the digital transformation of the organization, It has to accelerate its speed and amplify its impact from a silo function to an integral strategic partner, from a support desk to an innovation engine, and from an order taker to a strategy co-maker. Unfortunately, more than two-thirds of changes and business transformations fail to achieve the expectation. Running IT as a change organization, how can CIOs drive such a multidimensional digital transformation effortlessly?

Envisioning and communicating to drive a People-centric digital transformation: The reason why many business transformations fail - some soft factors and the challenge of complexity come into play. It’s about the vision to change and effective communication to get the people buy-in. Hence, the CIO as an IT leader should be a productive member and provide some actionable insight and options. More to the point, without the analysis, insight, and understanding of the CIO, how does any C-executive direct the creation of a business strategy that is increasingly dependent on technology and, competitive advantages that derive from the technology. Forward-looking organizations are empowering their CIOs to lead at the front, hence, CIOs require being confident to create and manage changes. It requires a leadership substance of vision and style that more closely matches the thought leadership practices and action-oriented style of top executives. CIOs need to be good “interpreters,” be fluent both business language and IT dialect. For any level or type of communication, mutual respect is the right attitude. A good ‘interpreter’ is not only about translating the content of the conversation but being cognizant of the tones and contextual intelligence, value multiple perspectives with respect to makes positive influence upon pulling a progressive conversation ahead for leading change effectively.

Business benefits and value articulation: Most IT organizations are still treated as the cost centers of the business. In order to improve its maturity, articulating business benefits and value is an important step in refining digital IT. In order to demonstrate IT value, organizations need to first know wherein lies the IT value. If you understand that upfront by doing the right strategic questioning, you can later go back and ask if you achieved the value that had been set out to attain. Broadly speaking, IT is about getting the right information to the right people to make the right decisions at the right time; it’s about distributing and sharing intelligence on the scale, and assisting business, social and lifestyle and purpose needs, uniformly, fairly and effectively. More specifically, IT leaders can lead further via inquiries: (1) How does IT become strategic? and (2) How does IT deliver maximum value? The value itself is a multi-dimensional concept, a seamless customer experience, an optimal business service, a commercial value proposition, a social value system which deals with and provides context for varying interest and need. Looking at it from the point of view of "What's in it for me?" The business would like to know what's in it for them. So the IT needs to first understand what the business is, what their pain points are, identify areas for improvement and those that can be improved with IT. From the strategic leadership perspective, where IT needs to provide a strategic advantage to the business line manager; where IT needs to make the function more productive, and ultimately improve overall business agility and maturity.

Organizational structure tuning and a balanced program portfolio building: To drive digital transformation, the organization also has to continue to re-imagine, reinvent and reshuffle itself to adapt to the changes, have better focus to execute what is needed of them. The organization needs to be realigned to ensure the right people are in the right positions; The focus of duties makes it much simpler to hire and scale the organization as business rapidly grow. The structure has to allow for agility and change, as the business grows and evolves. You need to also ensure, technology is providing a new innovation function or service, to look at new areas and new ideas for business growth. The objective of digital business is to break down silo walls and utilize the human potential of continuous improvement for a more people-centric reorganization. The wins achieved by the cross-functional teams have a positive impact on business-side perceptions of IT as well as providing a sense of success often missing in many IT organizations. The main objective is to lay the foundation for strategy execution via managing a balanced program portfolio closely aligned with the business model and capabilities.

The digital world is so data-driven and information-intensive, technology needs will only expand, and most likely expand hyperbolically. Digital IT should be more robust and antifragile than ever. IT and the overall business digital transformation is multidimensional. IT just needs to adjust to the digital speed, be wired (or wireless) to change, and take a leadership role in navigating digital transformation. IT should play even more crucial roles as a service broker, a customer solutionary, value-creator, and a digital orchestrator.


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