Information technology advanced leaps and bounds in recent years. Key daily processes have changed to support a more intuitive and productive end user experience, and the workloads themselves have migrated from on-premises servers to cloud and managed environment. And this is only the beginning.
IT transformation, involving all kinds of critical, digital initiatives, is taking place in nearly every organization today. But it can create real challenges for decision-makers and IT administrators if not carried out with a clear, structured plan.
In fact, Medium contributor Vitaliy Zhovtyuk pointed out that while over 125,000 organizations kicked off digital transformation projects in 2016, expecting results like an 80 percent increase in revenue by 2020, many didn’t have an explicit strategy in place dictating these initiatives. Of these enterprises, only about 27 percent backed their modernization efforts with a concrete strategy.
In order for businesses to reap the kinds of benefits that digital transformation promises, and future-proof their existing infrastructure, they must lay the right foundation first.
What initiatives are driving digital transformation?
As Scott Sinclair of Enterprise Strategy Group noted in a piece for TechTarget, current IT modernization involves much more than just slapping together a new mobile app. The projects which enterprises are carrying out under the umbrella of digital transformation are advanced and multifaceted. Specifically, they include migrating workloads away from on-premises systems, leveraging data analytics to inform the company’s core strategy and supporting better relationships with consumers through advanced tech solutions.
“Digital transformation enables you to better engage customers, run your core business more efficiently and enter new markets through new processes and products as well as data analytics,” Sinclair explained. “So IT changes from a department that implements best practices or general-purpose applications to one that defines or enables new custom practices and workflows that serve to differentiate your digital organization.”
As IT administrators work to spearhead their own modernization efforts, there are a few key steps and best practices they need to observe to ensure they’re putting their business on the right path.
Outline your modernization vision with your end goal in mind
First things first, it’s important to establish an overall plan or map of your digital transformation that takes into account where your infrastructure is currently and where you’d like to take it. Zhovtyuk advised creating this vision with an eye on your end goal, and not necessarily focusing just on the problems you aim to solve. In this way, you can establish short- and long-term modernization goals along your digital transformation journey. Taking this approach will help guide your efforts and prevent you and your team from getting ahead of yourselves. What’s more, these key, defined objectives can also represent benchmarks for measurable progress.
Take a look at your market competitors
It’s worth keeping in mind that while digital transformation efforts will surely impact internal processes and employee-facing platforms, changes should also be made to customer-focused systems, as well. As you work to create your modernization plan and structured initiatives, it can be very beneficial to take some cues from your market competitors.
Consider elements like the type of experience your competitors support on their website and the differentiating factors that set them apart. Analyzing and improving on these elements will help take your IT innovation to the next level.
“As the boundaries between industries continue to blur, you can find practical solutions and a massive portion of inspiration in other fields,” Zhovtyuk suggested. “Go beyond your industry and explore success stories in other verticals.”
Eliminate silos, especially between IT and the core business
One of the most critical keys to success with digital transformation is ensuring alignment between IT administrators’ plans and the business’s core enterprise goals. Remember, it’s not just about putting the latest and greatest tech in place – transformation efforts should serve to support the company and its main objectives.
As Deloitte researchers pointed out, this means that IT administrators and other department heads will need to work closely to make sure that everyone is on the same page.
“In a business climate where emerging technologies and rapid-fire innovation can quickly render established strategies and business models obsolete and, at the same time, give rise to potentially transformative opportunities, there can be no disconnect between IT and the business,” Atilla Terzioglu, Martin Kamen, Tim Beohm and Anthony Stephan wrote for Deloitte.
To discover more about guiding your digital transformation, and the critical role that an infrastructure performance monitoring solution plays, connect with Galileo Performance Explorer today.