It almost feels like the race is on. It won’t be an easy race and there is no finish line. But those who lead the race will be the ones to get the crowd’s attention and leave their competitors behind.
Digital Transformation has been happening for sure but up until this year, it seems many organisations were often overlooking the bigger picture for more immediate goals. In 2018, more focus is being given to how such separate initiatives must become connected to deliver a truly organisation-wide and holistic digital transformation. The urgency will be to deliver measureable long-term success, before potential disruption by a start-up or newly-transformed competitor.
So how does an IT Leader prepare for this race? And how do they approach the hurdles along the way?
1. Choose a network that supports DX
A network built for DX should allow an organisation to compete more effectively in both the physical and digital worlds – and better engage with customers through mobile apps, location-based services and other engagement technologies. According to IDC, “success in the digital transformation economy will depend on the ability to build robust ‘data pipelines’ that flow both in and out of the enterprise.” If your network is down, business is down. It’s that simple.
2. Know the Barriers & Prepare for the Hurdles
According to a recent report from the Harvard Business Review, an inability to adapt quick, legacy systems, and difficulties working across silos are the top 3 barriers to digital transformation. The approach is paying off for who overcome these hurdles: 56% of CEOs said that their digital improvements have already increased profits according to a recent Gartner survey. New digital initiatives can place huge demands on IT infrastructure and threaten to create bottlenecks if an organisation’s network doesn’t have the agility to scale or the ability to integrate with legacy systems.
3. Embrace Data
As an enterprise continues to pursue digital transformation, it will be flooded with more data than it may have ever had before. Using tools like machine learning, insights can be found and used to power the future of the business. But where to host that data is also a key factor of success. We’re seeing enterprises embracing a hybrid model that brings the best of cloud and on-premise storage to the fore – allowing companies the flexibility and scalability to add new services while ensuring availability, security and speed of mission-critical ones. But it’s not as basic as that and where to host your data and applications depends on a host of factors: data sensitivity & security, flexibility & time-to-market, types of compute, capex v opex and whether the services are web facing or internal facing.
4. Secure your Crown Jewels
IDC advises to make network security a primary consideration – data is the lifeblood of DX, and its explosion, along with the growth of IoT, connected devices, mobile and cloud, have created more entry points for network attacks. Businesses need to accept that they can’t predict and protect against every threat but focus their attention on stopping the attacks that would most impact their business. On average, hackers stay hidden on a network for 140 days – that’s nearly five months to learn the vulnerabilities of your infrastructure and access sensitive information. It is important therefore that companies can spot, identify and respond to abnormal behaviour. Organisations must look for next-generation security that is integrated with the network infrastructure at its foundation.
5. Build for mobility
As more devices connect to the network – from sensors to smartphones – wireless will become the primary means of accessing enterprise networks. By 2021 traffic from wireless and mobile devices will account for more than 63 percent of total IP traffic. So what does this mean for the network of the future? Not only will enterprise networks need to incorporate WiFi that is highly resilient, scalable and always available, but they will need to ensure a consistent experience for both wired and wireless users.
Many of NI’s businesses that are accelerating Digital Transformation in their industry have done so with our help – such as Concentrix, Hendersons, Chain Reaction Cycles, Ulster University, Hastings Hotels, People 1st and Acheson & Glover. With IT teams often scrambling just to keep the lights on, working with a partner with extensive expertise and experience in networking makes sense. IDC estimates that by 2020, just 2 years away, 60% of all enterprises will have fully articulated an organisation-wide digital platform strategy, and will be in the process of implementing it. Are you ready?
Connect with Matt McCloskey on LinkedIn, or contact the team on 028 900 2100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.