Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Three IT Stretches to Leap Digital Maturity

Digital transformation is the journey for solving problems caused by "Conflict," "Out of Balance," "Far from Equilibrium."  Digital Paradigm means hyper-connectivity, interdependence, and integration.

Digital IT plays an omnipresent role in catalyzing business digital transformation via managing information, leveraging internal and external resources, integrating business processes & capabilities, enabling, innovating, and optimizing the consumer-driven technology that’s going viral in the enterprise. Digital transformation is not a one-dimensional change, but a multi-directional expansion. IT has to dig into the underlying business processes across functions and stretch up on the horizon to expedite changes and make a leap of digital maturity.  

Broaden the outlook to strike the balance: Traditional organizations were run in silos at the industrial age, due to lack of information and scarce of knowledge, often management has a too narrow view of changes. Today’s organizations are at a crossroads where the segregation or silo of business units are at a need to reach across the aisles and respectively work with each other. Each business function brings a unique perspective and a set of skills to the table. The business unit must each lend this view to the executive office and participate in decisions about business strategy. It is a strategic imperative to broaden the outlook and envision the bigger picture of digitalization. This is particularly important for IT because IT is an integrator to glue silos to the whole; and because IT is in a unique position to have an oversight view of enterprise processes. To make the link strong and the outlook clear is to empower the IT team and make them think through the business world while working on the solutions. Where the technologists aren't just "IT people," but instead are business partners with IT skills. It also means that the technologists have to take an interest in the business, step away from behind the computer monitor and understand the business issues. This is a small step but a much-needed step to bridge IT and business gap, and strike the right balance of stability and speed, standardization and innovation, management and governance, centralizing and decentralizing IT. People need to stop doing things in silos, with a collaborative platform framed by IT, businesses can all be more productive in terms of delivery timelines, meeting management, business, and client expectation.

Deepen the business insight to deal with conflict: Digital era is volatile, complex, uncertain and ambiguous, to get into the deep, deep digital reality, businesses today must bridge the insight gap to both frame problems and solve them effectively. Because often information is the lifeblood and technology is the backbone of the business, there are times when IT will be the only party in the room with an in-depth understanding of the business from process/capability perspective and capture the customer insight and business foresight. IT should be part of business decision making for dealing with conflict, in order to arrive at an optimal decision for the benefit of the company. IT using its business sense can help business analyze information unearth unknown benefit, as it is often difficult for non-technical people to understand the incredibly broad scope of solutions that technology can provide to business problems. So, IT needs to use such knowledge and experience to identify, sell, and pilot new processes and platforms that can give business leverage in its domain and sector. This is the dimension in which IT is really almost given 'gifts' every day.

Make a leap to achieve digital equilibrium: Digital equilibrium is achieved via the harmony of strategy, structure, people, and business performance. Building consensus requires bringing all parties together at the beginning. When you look at defining an issue, constructing a solution, and then communicating that; you should also seek to involve the people that will do the work or will have to support the solution. There is a key difference between digital and industrial organizations. In industrial organizations, the structure is rigid and hard to change, and the traditional management style is top-down and bureaucratic. In an environment where change is constantly happening, that handicaps the organization. Hence, in the emerging digital organizations, the business leverage digital technologies and tools in enforcing holistic thinking, cross-functional collaboration, and dynamic processes and case management. Digital IT acts more as an ‘orchestrator,’ to conduct an ongoing, information-mature, customer-centric digital organizations. Success is far more likely if CIOs and IT professionals are seen as integral team players whose efforts add real value to the deployment of collaborative team structures within the organization and achieve the high level of digital equilibrium.

Digital transformation is the journey for solving problems caused by "Conflict," "Out of Balance," "Far from Equilibrium."  Digital Paradigm means hyper-connectivity, interdependence, and integration. The new age of digital thinking attributes value and purpose to the ecosystem. The information and technology group could be very useful in terms of looking at things differently, contributing ideas, offering new methods and capabilities, and so on. The focus of IT needs to get back to its root--the big "I" as Information, Intelligence, Innovation, Integration, and Improvement, in order to reach the higher level of digital maturity.


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