All trades use technology. That’s why digital transformation is now about the whole company, not just the IT department. The mastery of the concrete stakes of each business, coupled with the adaptation to the constant evolution of the available tools, constitute two major challenges for the IT department.
Jan Eric Maasch, consultant at Lucernys, gives a vision of the digital transformation in companies in France.
Get ahead of the business to avoid being subjected to digital transformation.
In a majority of companies in France, we still see a very static hierarchical structure at all levels of their organization. This partly explains the difficulties IT departments have in adapting.
The requirement for digital transformation is still imposed by the business.
Today, the challenge for the IT department is to have the capacity to modify its organizational structure to become more reactive and agile in order to better adapt to the evolution of this new paradigm. Without the ability to anticipate needs based on knowledge of its environment and technological advances, the IT department runs the risk of simply being overwhelmed by the business.
The effects of digital transformation on the IT department
- Effects on the tools.
Cloud, unified communications, SD WAN, Big Data, AI, IoT, VoIP… technologies are evolving at an unprecedented rate, and are subject to constant change. Technological and financial monitoring must be constant where delay is very often paid for by financial losses for the company.
In just 10 years, scalable and flexible solutions have replaced solid but cumbersome solutions. However, they require a high and constant level of control to guarantee the same level of security and stability.
Choosing technologies to enable teams with different business needs to collaborate, spread over different sites, is a demanding challenge, especially since these technologies are renewed every six months.
- Effects on the organization.
Not to be subjected to the digital revolution requires an effort of adaptation of the whole organization.
By limiting flexibility and agility, the hierarchical pyramid structures observed in many IT departments are holding back digital transformation.
Businesses are demanding ever shorter lead times to deliver the expected solutions. IT teams must structure themselves as a priority to meet this demand for responsiveness.
The intimate knowledge of the IT structure is a priority.
CIOs cover a very wide range of company activities. On the other hand, the attention paid to the control of the existing is often insufficient.
Before projecting the company’s future needs and identifying the technologies required for its development, the IT department must have a thorough understanding of what exists.
Thus, if the quality of the network coverage is good, installing an SD Wan solution should not be a priority.
Digital transformation requires an exhaustive knowledge of the existing system.
Investing in a mobile fleet that becomes obsolete too quickly, deploying centralized and bandwidth-hungry business applications with low available bandwidth on the sites using them, adopting a new technology with an incompatible fleet, developing an application whose initial projection was poor… There is no shortage of examples of failures that could have been avoided.
To make the right decisions in the race for digital transformation, the IT department must first have a comprehensive and clear vision of the tools and solutions available to the company.
Identifying the level of use of the technologies available in the company can serve as a first gas pedal in this technological transition.
New bridges to build in the organization.
First of all, digitalization disrupts the organization, i.e. the relationship between people. The perception of the relationship between services can change dramatically. So when an application is created for end customers, a very large part of the organization is involved. People who did not cross paths with each other must learn to collaborate.
Digitalization requires a form of management flexibility.
Digitalization is a transversal movement that involves people in a very concrete way. Bridges must be created within the company to facilitate exchanges. The difficulties arise first through these new communication requirements.
Digital transformation, a new cement in the organization.
Achieving a successful digital metamorphosis is more a question of organization than a question of mastering technology. The adoption of new modes of collaboration and exchange between employees is crucial. Digitalization implies more communication between departments.
Digital transformation, a source of value creation to be carefully maintained.
The new links that are being created within the company are turning organizations upside down. In the end, these exchanges generate the innovations that feed the digital transformation.
One digital revolution can hide another!