Article | April 12, 2021
Digital Transformation is not a magic wand; it is a complex yet essential enterprise commitment to change. Companies that have succeeded have reaped significant benefits. The Deloitte Digital Transformation Survey 2020 found that greater digital maturity is associated with better financial performance. The higher-maturity companies in this year’s sample were about 3X more likely than lower-maturity companies to report annual net revenue growth and net profit margins — a pattern that was consistent across industries.
Unfortunately, most enterprises do not fully appreciate what it entails. Some see it as a technology or a budget problem; others believe it is an optional strategy — they are both wrong. To truly succeed, transformation needs to be led from the top by setting the strategy and allocating resources. Antonio Neri of HPE hits the spot when he says, “Digital transformation is no longer an option for enterprises, but a strategic imperative.”
For me, one of the most significant examples of top-driven organisational change is Jeff Bezos’ call to “Rearchitecting the Firm” in 2002. It is a seminal work. The principles of this mandate went on to form the backbone of Amazon in the modern cloud world. It was clear, direct, and backed up by management action.
More than 75% of CEOs agreed that the pandemic sped up their companies’ transformation plans
COVID is a catalyst for change
The flurry of digital technology solutions spurred by COVID-19 presents a unique opportunity for enterprises to rethink how technology decisions are made and apply them in new and meaningful ways. Covid-19 dramatically accelerated technology adoption across all industries. According to a Fortune-Deloitte CEO survey and the KPMG 2020 CEO Outlook Survey, more than 75% of CEOs agreed that the pandemic sped up their companies’ transformation plans. As Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella noted, “We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months.”
80% of companies plan to accelerate their companies’ digital transformation plans, primarily incentivized by the global pandemic implications. The same study also concludes that only 30% of digital transformations have achieved their objectives which is troubling.
80% of companies plan to accelerate their companies’ digital transformation plans, however only 30% of digital transformations have achieved their objectives - BCG Research
Most people forget that digital transformation is less about technology and much more about the organization’s culture and business shift. Key stakeholders need to rethink customer experience, business models, and operations fundamentally. It is all about finding new ways to deliver value, generate revenue, improve efficiency, and, most importantly driving sustainable innovation. Bear in mind, just moving to the cloud is not Digital Transformation.
Crises Breed Innovation
I am of the firm belief that uncertainty drives creativity. Crises are the breeding ground for innovation. You must make decisions quickly, and you never have enough time or information to weigh difficult choices thoroughly.
McKinsey’s analysis shows that bold innovators emerge from crises substantially ahead of peers — and maintain this advantage for years to come. Innovators not only outperformed the market during the financial crisis but continued to widen the gap during and after the recovery. Analysis of the performance of approximately 2,000 companies between 2007 and 2017 against the S&P 500 reinforces those conclusions: staying focused on growth and innovation through a downturn helped the top-performing companies to generate higher returns to shareholders.
Staying focused on growth and innovation through a downturn helped the top-performing companies to generate higher returns to shareholders
Antonio Neri and other leaders confirm that as the pace of technology disruption continues to accelerate, digital-native and digitally transformed companies are outpacing their competitors.
The McKinsey study shows that roughly one in ten companies in their sample achieved higher revenue growth, innovation, digital adoption, and profitability than the others over the entire 2007–17 economic cycle and during the downturn years. The outperformers also delivered excess returns of roughly 8%, while the rest hovered around zero throughout the period.
So, what does it take to succeed?
Do existing leadership teams have the skills to undertake true digital transformation? I thought it would be a good idea to look at how companies are hiring critical resources. A study by professors from Harvard and Darden and executives from Spencer Stuart published in the Harvard Business Review addressed this specific question. The team looked at more than 100 search criteria for C-suite positions in Fortune 1000 companies across a broad range of industries, and the results were very suggestive.
There has been a rise in tech and digital expertise search even before the pandemic: 59% of executive searches included technological or digital knowledge. Company boards were asking for these skills across a wide variety of roles. This fact also suggests that people with the right skill sets are already in leadership positions. Not surprisingly, 100% of the specs for CIOs, CMOs, and CTOs sought technical or digital skills. However, the functions that got neglected in the search for technological and digital expertise were more revealing. Less than a third of the job specs for CHROs and chief accounting officers mentioned these required skills. Even more worrying — only 40–60% of searches for roles such as CEO, board director, and CFOs required digital know-how.
At the very minimum, we need all leaders to understand how to build digital businesses. This shift alone could be the difference between success and failure.
But is that enough for now?
Almost every organization has stepped up its digital transformation efforts in 2020–21. Success is as much about the right technology platform choice as it is about leadership, agility, talent, and a clear vision. A new and emerging factor is consumers wanting the brands they use to focus on sustainability issues. So do employees and prospective employees. The driver for this shift largely springs from realizing that human activities’ ecological footprint is a probable cause for the crisis we face today.
While we keep talking about the usual polluters like utilities, transportation, agriculture, and climate change causes, some lesser-discussed and more exciting facts would make the issue more relatable.
Did you know that in processing 3.5 billion searches a day, Google accounts for about 40% of the internet’s carbon footprint? They have been carbon neutral since 2007, but their infrastructure still emits a considerable volume of CO2.
Did you know that Bitcoin currently uses enough power (121 terawatt-hours) to run Cambridge University for almost 700 years?
To address sustainability in a meaningful manner, we need to take a holistic view of the players, their impact and then push for a mutually beneficial solution . Else, it is bound to fail.
As a first step, 26 CEOs of Europe-based companies have signed a Declaration to support Green and Digital Transformation of the EU. They formed a European Green Digital Coalition, committing on behalf of their companies to not only make the tech sector to become more sustainable, circular, and a zero polluter but also to support sustainability goals of other priority sectors such as energy, transport, agriculture, and construction while contributing to an innovative, inclusive and resilient society.
Like these CEOs, Accenture also believes that there is great value at the intersection of digital technologies and sustainability — they call it Twin Transformers. Companies leveraging both are 2.5X more likely to be among tomorrow’s strongest-performing businesses than others.
BigTech is conscious of its responsibilities to the climate. Almost all majors players have made pledges to reverse CO2 emission. Since they are all profit-driven, I am sure they have also figured out this also means good business by the numbers too (a counter-intuitive rationalisation but better than getting caught in the justification game)
In the future, a company’s commitment to ESG-related programs will drive the ability to attract investors and retain talent. Companies also realize that ESG factors, when integrated into strategic digital transformation decisions, may offer potential long-term performance advantages. One of the critical levers for moving to sustainable systems will be technology, a lot of technology, and a lot of investment. But how do we make it accessible to all and profitable to the providers at the same time?
HPE is one company that has made significant strides in this regard by embracing the twin doctrine of digital transformation and sustainability. Their customers can reduce their energy costs by more than 30% by eliminating overprovisioning through HPE GreenLake. In fact, their consumption-based offerings have reduced customer carbon footprint by 50% in one case. Minimizing e-waste is another area of focus for them too.
So what have we learned from all this? As an ancient Chinese proverb states, “When the winds of change blow, some people build walls, others build windmills.”
What will you build?
Article | July 21, 2021
In today’s world, everyone and everything needs an expert’s work. Every sector and organization thrives to achieve perfection for themselves and their customers. But with the evolving scenario and new technologies emerging, perfection needs outsourcing. On that account, every organization is building its services to provide other organizations with managed services.
In simple words, managed services are the need of the hour. They have been around for a pretty long time; however, the benefits of managed services have proved their efficiency in the past few years.
Managed services are not limited to IT but provide services from supply management to call centers because of its optimal efficiency and organizational performance. This goes for the IT and non-IT sectors as well.
Every organization comprises of an IT department. But what happens when the IT department is involved in solving the technical issues of the organization, rather than focusing on their core work? The business goes haywire resulting in more investment than ROI.
In the past few years, every business has realized the importance of managed services. As a result, the managed services market’s global business value, which was valued at US$185.98 billion in 2019 is estimated to reach US$356.24 billion by 2025. And this is the result of the benefits of managed services.
What are Managed Services?
In the post-Covid era, almost all businesses are relying on their IT infrastructure to keep them going. Technology is the need of the hour to assure the best efficiency and gain maximum profits. But an in-house team to manage all the IT work and the infrastructure from servers to networks costs a lot. This is a huge blow to the resources especially for start-ups and small to medium-sized businesses.
This is where managed services come to the rescue. Managed services providers have the expertise and infrastructure to ensure that your network administration runs perfectly well. From data backup to security, they take care of everything required for IT support.
The benefits of managed services can highly be availed by start-ups and small to medium scale businesses. Implementing managed services provides them with the latest infrastructure and updated technology at nominal costs.
As said earlier, managed services can be outsourcing to any part of the business, but IT managed services play a significant role these days. Thus, we will focus on the benefits of managed services related to IT.
Benefits of Managed Services
Managed services simplify your IT management. They have abolished the break-fix method and paved the way for regular and consistent service. We would not wait for something to break and then repair it while wasting resources. Managed services assure that there is no break or downtime in your IT system. Whether you have a start-up or a multinational company, the benefits of managed services make sure that you focus on the things that matter the most.
Here are the top 5 benefits of managed services for your business.
Managed services lower the IT costs incredibly. Lots of dollars are spent hiring and training the IT staff, plus the in-house infrastructure costs a fortune. In addition, the maintenance of the equipment and the retention of the staff can create financial issues in the organization. Thus, availing IT managed services will widen your resource base.
You can put your resources to use in the right place and avail the best IT support services at nominal costs.
Your IT services are streamlined and managed by a single provider. It helps to increase and decrease the services according to your demand and supply in the market. In addition, the monthly or yearly subscription plans will help keep your budget as planned.
Minimum or No Downtime
It is estimated that network downtime can cost a business almost US$5600 a minute. So, now you can take into account how the benefits of the low cost of managed services help your business.
Server failures, machine malfunctioning, electrical disruptions, or unintentional human errors can cause downtime. However, managed services can cut down downtime or even make sure that it does not occur.
Their proactive approach to the maintenance of the system through remote monitoring and management ensures business continuity.
An Expert’s Approach
Technologies to a managed service are like solutions to every problem. Their in-depth knowledge, state-of-art infrastructure, and updated technologies guarantee top-notch services and support.
An in-house IT service may or may not be able to find solutions to all the technical hurdles. Plus, their training can be expensive and time-consuming. So instead of wasting resources and trying to hit the target in the dark, it is better to avail specialized services. These services can be used according to your requirements.
Thus, the benefits of managed services include expert IT services according to your cost, time, and project requirements.
Security & Compliance
These reasons to use managed services stand out more prominently than others. For instance, even if your company data is accessed by a third party, then an authenticated service provider will regulate to keep all the information secure. Plus, they update the system on a timely basis to keep it safe from security threats and breaches.
A managed service provider ensures that your organization is up to date with the required compliances and audits. This saves you from violating data regulations that you may be unaware of. The trusted service provider conducts regular audits and provides system reports while assuring your system is updated with the current technology.
Along with cost savings, the benefits of managed services include scalability. Scalability saves your resources, time and assures that your employees perform the tasks that they are hired for.
When you hire a managed service provider, you can scale the acquired services according to your demands. For example, during holiday seasons, when there is increased demand, you can upscale your services, and at the end of the season, you can revert to the original requirements.
Scalable solutions allow you to adapt to rapidly changing market conditions while assuring productivity, system availability, and minimal or no downtime.
How to Choose the Right Managed Service Provider?
The benefits of managed services are totally worth every penny you spend. But it would help if you were extra careful about choosing the provider. Look systematically at the managed services model of the provider and decide. You need an extremely trustable and recognized managed service partner to manage your services.
Consider the below factors while deciding.
24X7 customer service
Total commitment & flexibility
Single point of contact
Continuous remote monitoring
If the managed service provider fulfills the above considerations and more, you know you have made the right choice.
Have an Open Approach to Managed Services
You may have a list of the pros and cons of managed services. But we are confident that the pros outgrow the cons.
The demand for managed services has surged in the pandemic as businesses are running efficiently even in remote conditions. All thanks to these services, you can now easily utilize managed services for seamless, secure connections and maximum ROI.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the value of managed services?
Managed services are economical for an organization in terms of time and cost if you compare recruitment or involvement of in-house staff and infrastructure. They provide maintenance, regular reports, minimal or no downtime, and expert security for your systems.
Do I need IT managed services?
Whether you are a start-up, small to medium-sized business, or a multinational company, you need IT managed services. We all know IT services demand expensive training and infrastructure, and if there is downtime, it costs huge losses to the businesses.
As a result, availing these services ensures productivity, maximum ROI, and reliable IT operations with minimum investment.
How do you explain managed services?
Managed services are processes or tasks that are outsourced to a service provider who handles them exclusively. They improve operations, cut expenses and increase the productivity of the organizations.
Managed services let you focus on your core business while your other processes are outsourced efficiently and securely.
"name": "What is the value of managed services?",
"text": "Managed services are economical for an organization in terms of time and cost if you compare recruitment or involvement of in-house staff and infrastructure. They provide maintenance, regular reports, minimal or no downtime, and expert security for your systems."
"name": "Do I need IT managed services?",
"text": "Whether you are a start-up, small to medium-sized business, or a multinational company, you need IT managed services. We all know IT services demand expensive training and infrastructure, and if there is downtime, it costs huge losses to the businesses.
As a result, availing these services ensures productivity, maximum ROI, and reliable IT operations with minimum investment."
"name": "How do you explain managed services?",
"text": "Managed services are processes or tasks that are outsourced to a service provider who handles them exclusively. They improve operations, cut expenses and increase the productivity of the organizations.
Managed services let you focus on your core business while your other processes are outsourced efficiently and securely."
Article | March 31, 2020
A type of artificial intelligence called machine learning can help predict which patients will develop diabetes, according to an ENDO 2020 abstract that will be published in a special supplemental section of the Journal of the Endocrine Society. Diabetes is linked to increased risks of severe health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Preventing diabetes is essential to reduce the risk of illness and death. "Currently we do not have sufficient methods for predicting which generally healthy individuals will develop diabetes," said lead author Akihiro Nomura, M.D., Ph.D., of the Kanazawa University Graduate School of Medical Sciences in Kanazawa, Japan.
Article | August 4, 2020
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a sought-after technology today as it performs complicated tasks faster than a human being and significantly reduces human errors. AI is penetrating all types of businesses and sectors like e-commerce, healthcare, and application development. The adoption of AI in the Quality Assurance (QA) sphere is increasing too. Using various AI techniques, we can automatically test changes in the UI and analyze reports to streamline testing and save time. Thus, using AI helps in faster and more accurate testing of the software developed and speeds up its deployment.