Digital Transformation uses technology to digitalize current business assets or to open new business avenues drawing on the advantages offered by ICT. This concept encompasses a much deeper change in organizations than we are used to as, for many, Digital Transformation has more to do with user experience, customer relations or the use of electronic selling channels. And yet this is only part of a process that impacts the whole organization.
The following example will help illustrate the rest of this blog. Let’s take a company that manufactures golf clubs and decides to offer a service (through a mobile app) to monitor their customers’ performance. Sensors, embedded in the club, collect data (strength, power, movement, impact, and direction) and map the resulting graphics to the corresponding dashboards. This business venture has it all: a new niche market and the addition of digital capacity to existing elements. In addition, it creates recurring billing, which increases customer loyalty as it’s based on continuous feedback.
Continuing with our example, let’s take a look at the infrastructure a company would need to set this up:
- Information Systems: Let’s start with the basics. All enterprises have information system platforms to support their business operations. Their overall complexity and functionality depends (in part) on each business model and the degree of company digitization.
- Customer Care Systems: They allow companies to interact with their customers in the areas of pre-sales, sales and after-sales. Here we include websites (and online sales), call-centers, customer support (on and off line), social networks and almost anything to increase client/company contact. In our example, the design of the app that shows the progress made falls into this category.
- Analytics and Big Data: Information is becoming an increasingly important tool for business success. Organizations need platforms to extract valuable information and make real-time decisions (look at the Inditex Group for example, a pioneer in this field). In the example given in this post, and generally for any company that wants to go digital, these platforms present two aspects: in-house analytics (assessing the organization from a business viewpoint) and external (analyzing user/product behavior for improvement or, user data itself – insomuch as the law allows).
- IoT: Although IoT platforms are not too common at the transformation stage, we can foresee a spectacular growth here over the next few years. Let’s not forget that Digital Transformation has a lot to do with digitalizing existing elements, mainly by incorporating sensors to gather data to send to analyzing applications or to storage centers without staff intervention. The Internet of Things at its purest. In our example, this would be the measuring sensors added to golf clubs in order to make them “digital”.
- Interaction with ecosystems: Increasing customer demands and the specialization these require mean that organizations frequently need to establish joint ventures to increase their competitive edge. These third parties form the company ecosystem and are strongly integrated into intercommunications between technology and management.
The success of digitally transforming an enterprise is obvious (if nothing else, because of the increase in productivity and competitiveness it brings) and is mainly based on the sharing of information generated by these five systems in real time. For example, prior to launching a new product, an avalanche of negative comments circulating the social networks should provoke an immediate change in design and/or fabrication and orders. Or even re-orientate the product to a different market than originally envisioned, simply through analyzing user data. Any or all of these scenarios entails fast information sharing.
To make this possible, the organization communications network must guarantee full and constant connectivity between all points, regardless of location and size. A flexible yet secure network that quickly adapts to meet company needs and offers operators a simple way to manage incoming information and the tools to promptly react to changes.
Our SD-WAN solutions are designed to do just that: to respond to company demands for transport when they undergo a digital transformation (far beyond digital marketing and e-commerce).
*n light of all the foregoing, Teldat will be present at the Digital Transformation Trade Fair taking place in Madrid from 23 to 25 May 2017. Our goal is to explain to all those interested in Digital Transformation why such process begins in the network.