Increased Digital Transformation and What It Means for Your Business

It's no secret that digital transformation is leading the momentum of the digital age and has become a necessity for businesses to gain a competitive edge. There is not an organization today that can avoid the undeniable push towards digital change. With increasing customer expectations, the ability to work from anywhere in the world, even when remote, has never been more critical. From AI to automation, executives are looking to maintain or increase their investments, yet these digital transformation initiatives move very slowly throughout a company and frequently end without successfully meeting the envisioned goals.

But transformation is not actually about any one "fix"; it's about bringing technology into the belly of your organization and fundamentally changing the way your stakeholders think about design.

The CIO role has drastically changed, and the IT department is no longer just the custodian of your organization's technology assets. Data that exhaust from these assets become the new resource to be leveraged in transformation initiatives and is the key to accelerating change, improving the business, and enhancing the customer experience. CIOs are becoming the owners of digital business and technology-led innovation. This is happening at a record pace, and of course, there are lots of questions like, "How can we get this right?"

The Right Strategy

Successful digital transformation starts with information gathering, knowing how your business operates, and understanding how work gets done. When you can fully comprehend how things work and measure the impact of changes in your organization, this will instill confidence in your decision to deploy a new business strategy.

The process strategy is a close second.

Using data-driven insights enables you to make smarter decisions faster and communicate better results. At the center of every digital transformation is data! This data creates a brand-new basis for competition in the marketplace. The game has changed. Advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning can drive better outcomes by enabling you to effortlessly visualize, analyze, and understand data. The organizations with the right data solutions and skills will be in the best position to survive and thrive in the digital age. Data will create more value for the business and deliver positive economic impacts for the organizations that make the investments.

Businesses need to take a data-driven approach to identifying and prioritizing the best processes for automation. This means bridging the gap between management, process leaders, and automation developers to provide advanced insights, so businesses can start automating faster and more effectively.

The data strategy comes first.

Your processes are complicated, but how you analyze them doesn't have to be.

Perhaps you are sick of inefficient and broken processes holding your organization back? Although there are many different opportunities for digital transformation, not all processes are equally good candidates. Generally speaking, processes that are well defined, rule based, and have a clear set of instructions are good candidates for automation. This means that processes with lots of logic or those that wouldn't be able to be clearly explained probably should be avoided for automation. However, this doesn't mean that these processes can't be improved. Maybe you have never actually understood or seen precisely how your processes execute across your organization. Today you can achieve highly intelligent and fully automated insights that can forecast processes in the future.

Insight and understanding are the final pieces.

Today, many businesses like yours must make significant changes to address issues and improve critical operations. In this information age, almost everything, every piece of work, every action or task performed within your organization leaves behind a digital footprint. These tiny data traces are more than just information sitting in a database. They contain the real, "as-is" story behind how YOUR organization and its processes work. Eventually, you are going to find a problem in how you manage and understand this data. You can't just throw more people at it; soon, you will need to find new tools and solutions to solve your business problems. These are often the latest technology innovations in artificial intelligence and machine learning that will become the center of your digital transformation initiative.

Don't Forget Security

Digital transformation is changing the business world. Today's advancements in technology offer organizations like yours limitless opportunities to improve processes and operations, turn data insights into engaging customer experiences, and accelerate business outcomes. There is no doubt that digital transformation is front and center in these latest efforts to modernize and improve workflows and business processes as well as increase productivity and gain a competitive advantage. However, these technologies also create security vulnerabilities through new potential points of attack. 

According to Gartner, future AI security will have three key perspectives:

1. Protection of AI-powered systems, secured AI training data, trained pipelines, and machine learning models
    1. 2. Leveraging AI to enhance security defense and utilizing machine learning to understand patterns, uncovering attacks and automating parts of the cybersecurity processes
    2. 3. Anticipating, identifying, and defending against harmful use of AI by attackers 


Automation and the Hybrid Workforce

Human-machine collaboration—the hybrid workforce—is the new normal for successful businesses. Customers' needs are growing more complex. Advances in artificial intelligence, machine learning algorithms, and increasing data collection provide exciting opportunities to better understand customers' journeys with empirical tools that are driven by innovative technologies. The human-machine collaboration is not just the future of work; it is the new normal for today’s high performing enterprises.

Employees today struggle to perform under the weight of often mind-numbing, repetitive work. They're influenced by their consumer experiences and want similar experiences in their jobs. With the rise of automation tools, however, many fear a dystopian future in which digital automation solutions replace jobs, leaving out human workers. Despite all that science fiction has imagined around AI, automation, and robots, automation in the workplace won’t give rise to the Terminator. Simple task automation, by itself, is not intelligent. It is unable to perform like a human worker. It's unable to make decisions on its own and doesn't have common sense. As a result, simple task automation software will never be able to outperform a human worker.

Digital Is the Future

True digital transformation empowers enterprises to make tremendous impacts where they matter most: customer experience, competitive advantage, visibility, and compliance. To successfully plan and execute a digital transformation strategy, it’s essential to develop a comprehensive view of the business operation and all the details related to the people, processes, and data that impact its performance. This can only be accomplished with the latest computing capabilities that are the backbone of providing artificial intelligence and machine learning via the cloud and edge computing.

Successful automation initiatives can transform every facet of an organization, from the boardroom to the shop floor.

Terms like digital transformation and automation are no longer just buzzwords; they are the keys to unlocking technology that is revolutionizing how businesses operate. These technologies are becoming essential across all business units and functions as customer expectations rise faster than companies can keep up. How will you keep your organization ahead of the transformation curve?

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