How Businesses can Succeed in the Digital Revolution


Posted on: Oct 02, 2014 by Rob Price

With the ‘Digital Revolution’ well and truly gathering pace it’s now sink or swim time for businesses. I’ve talked already about some of the benefits that digitally-led thinking can offer - now I want to look at how organisations can start to implement these strategies...

1. Begin Thinking in Two Speeds

First off, it’s important to make a distinction between ‘IT speed’ and ‘Digital speed’. While on the surface the two terms seem to be interchangeable each refers to a very specific agenda within the business.

‘IT Speed’ is about efficiency, stability and ensuring constant availability for operations and cloud enables this in providing the robust, yet flexible infrastructure required to keep businesses fully functional.

On the other hand, ’Digital speed’ refers to keeping your business model and internal processes agile and open. If IT is a long game then Digital is a series of sprints. Businesses must think carefully about how it delivers its services to customers, staying at the leading edge and answering the market’s ever-changing demands. Digital operates according to a new timescale of days and weeks, rather than months and years.

Organisations need to invest in an approach which combines both speeds to deliver a compelling and cutting-edge service supported by a reliable foundation. Canopy, our cloud arm, has recently announced its Platform-as-a-Service offering known as Cloud Fabric helping firms to accelerate the creation of cloud-native digital applications, in parallel with driving efficiency in ‘IT speed’ through cloud operating models, as well as IaaS and SaaS platforms.

2. Empowering Employees to Think Digital

Thinking digital means encouraging your employees to also become digital in their mindsets. Businesses must empower their employees to experiment with new working practices - enabling them to find a way of working which can maximise their efficiency and help them produce their best Work.

Employees should be free to consume digital services in their day job, choosing their own apps or devices in a manner whereby internal IT services become an enabler not a hindrance. Look at developing a framework where employees are able to collaborate together, to create, to pilot, to drive change using new applications and solutions. Sanctioning this freedom from within the company will also help avoid the complexities of ‘shadow IT’ and ensure you are able to install your own levels of governance to protect your IP and corporate knowledge.

3. Keep Moving

Last but not least – scale back your expectations: digital-thinking is a working culture, not a final solution. Evolution is the key; your business must become more receptive to changes. It’s not about moving from one fixed technology solution to another but looking to refine your processes, using new technologies such as cloud computing or mobile-device-management solutions as a foundation.

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About Rob Price

COO for Worldline UK&I and member of the Scientific Community
Rob is COO for Worldline UK&I, the European leader in the payment and transactional services industry. He was previously Head of Digital for Atos UK&I, is a member of the Atos Scientific Community and was a founder of the award winning CIO/CTO Atos blog, the predecessor to Ascent. He successfully melds inspiration and creativity with strategic direction and implementation, focusing on driving more efficient and effective exploitation of technology and services to drive positive business outcomes and better connect our clients with their end consumers. The insight gained through both operational delivery roles and strategic Digital evangelist roles ensures that he views the Digital Revolution from multiple perspectives. Find him on twitter @The_Digital_COO

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