• August 2, 2016

Spread Too Thin: 2 Areas to Focus Your Transformation Efforts

Learn where to invest your limited resources.

With the pressure to transform to meet the demands of the future state, many enterprise leaders feel a sense of urgency to do everything at once. Here’s why that can be a very bad idea: At the end of the day, you have limited time and resources, and trying to do too much often leads to poor execution that can create much bigger issues in the future.

So, what’s the better approach?

René Aerdts, Chief Technologist, Procter & Gamble account and Fellow, Enterprise Services, argues that enterprise leaders are better off starting small with IT transformation—identifying their biggest issues and focusing on the unique requirements needed to address the most time-sensitive ones—but keeping the bigger picture and strategic goal and vision in mind.

“It’s imperative to focus on what’s really broken in the organization,” Aerdts says. “What are the biggest pain points? If there’s a pain point—lost revenue, inefficiencies, security gaps, etc.—there’s more of a willingness to accept change.”

How to Hone in On Your Biggest Issues

To uncover the areas most in need of transformation in your organization, Aerdts suggests honing in on two key opportunities:

  • Areas of competitive advantage: If there’s a competitive advantage you can develop through IT transformation (or one your competitors can exploit if you don’t transform), it will be easier to rally the entire organization around the idea of change.
  • Areas of new development: Whether it’s DevOps, cloud-native development, mobility, or another trend, examining these areas of innovation will reveal opportunities to leave legacy ideas behind and dramatically improve some aspect of enterprise operations.

And one bonus area to consider: User experience.

“No matter what you’re trying to accomplish with IT transformation—whether it’s internal or customer-facing—you have to factor in user experience,” Aerdts says. “If there’s an area in the organization where user experience is poor because of legacy infrastructure or outdated technology, IT leaders would be wise to start there.”

Where to Invest for Visibility and Integration

While business issues are organizationally dependent, Sukhi Gill, Technical Directorate-EMEA and Fellow, Enterprise Services, says it’s easier to speculate on technology that has the best chance of delivering significant organizational ROI in both the short- and long-term. In Gill’s opinion, the safest bets include:

  • Enterprise IT infrastructure: Specifically, bimodal IT—because it provides the reliability and security of traditional IT, while also improving speed and agility in the future.
  • Risk management innovation: Enterprise risk isn’t going away. Mitigating it before undertaking other transformation projects is critical to developing an integrated enterprise security strategy.

“To succeed in the future state, the enterprise must invest in systems and processes that are highly adaptable in ways that allow the organization to meet constantly evolving needs,” Gill explains.

By choosing strategic business issues and smart technology to kick off your transformation, enterprises can build a foundation for success.

Like this story? Read about the four factors of enterprise adaptability.