A survey found six common themes of digital transformation leaders, themes which can be found in digital business platforms as well.
Is there a hotter business topic currently than that of digital transformation?
Outrageous statements such as those made by Microsoft describing it as a $4.5 trillion market opportunity, and IDC estimates of it being worth USD20 trillion (more than 20 percent of global GDP) have become par for the course these days.
In order to keep pace with rapidly evolving technologies, it’s therefore obvious that every business needs to take the transition to digital seriously – no matter in which sphere the business finds itself.
Themes of Digital Transformation Leaders
Our attention was piqued recently by a survey conducted by the Digital Enterprise Journal, which researched over 1000 global organisations for particular themes of digital transformation leaders, the results of which can be summed up in the diagramme below.
The six identified themes of digital transformation leaders can also be said to feature strongly in digital platforms, and by extension the Core Partner IT channel platform.
By nature, digital platforms are integrated with various business components, serving as a valuable information transmission mechanism between them. The ability of various business components to ‘talk’ to each other opens up new business efficiencies, as well as new opportunities for collecting data and generating insights.
As mentioned in the point above, one of the major assets of a digital platform is its potential for use in a business intelligence capacity. Digital platforms can act as customer data platforms, and are receiving increasing attention for their ability to aggregate customer data for use in strategic business planning. The ability to add a level of machine learning to these platforms adds further marketing capability such as automated cross-sell and up-sell.
Described in the diagramme above as a major theme in multiple technologies, automation has indeed become a tech buzzword of late. It’s not a case of unwarranted hype however – automation hold real promise in terms of eliminating repetitive and labour-intensive activities performed by human resources. These factors, with the accompanying speed and accuracy gains from digital, have the potential to reduce costs and boost profit.
Becoming agile across key processes is reported to be one of the top goals for digital transformation for many organisations. By being digital, businesses are able to react faster to changes in their surrounding environment, are more able to monetize technology and are better positioned to seize opportunities which traditional businesses struggle to realize competitive advantage from.
Digital transformation leaders are more likely to improve collaboration and communication, leading to improved innovation both internally and externally. Digital platforms also provide businesses with the ability to combine information from different business areas to provide new insights, whilst supplying an overarching view of business situations as well.
Closely related to agility, digital technology introduces flexibility to traditional operations processes. Digital platforms have enabled a more organic interaction between demand and supply, driven by the immediacy and visibility of digital information flows. Companies are no longer held hostage to holding large, burdensome amounts of stock as a safety measure for example, but can optimise their inventories and speedily place orders whenever necessary.
Businesses which incorporate digital platforms have various advantages relating to speed, accuracy and data.
Not only do businesses which incorporate digital platforms have various advantages relating to speed, accuracy and data, but within the IT channel context, vendors are increasingly insisting on their distribution channel partners having digital mechanisms of getting their product to market. At the other end of the pipeline, end-users expect to engage on sophisticated digital platforms which enable them to browse, learn about and buy products and services.
Dan Schulman, CEO of PayPal has been quoted as saying that “The biggest impediment to a company’s future success is its past success.” When it comes to the traditional IT channel, that statement may ring very true for old-fashioned channel businesses as digital becomes the new normal.