Recently, regardless of where you look, you’ll find features on Digital Transformation. Digital or physical blogs (including this one) and magazines are full of articles on the digitization of companies, the advantages, drawbacks and risks and the most efficient way to undertake this procedure. And this occasionally leads us to lose sight of the main issue: Digital Transformation involves a number of key technological tools that only make sense if the organization has a profitable business model with defined procedures and is geared to today’s needs.
This may seem an odd title for a post by a communications equipment manufacturer whose portfolio includes a complete range of Wi-Fi products. But the truth is that the title refers to a photo that went viral of a bar sign advising customers to take advantage of the bar’s lack of connectivity and engage in good old conversation.
A couple of weeks ago, Madrid was the venue for what has been heralded as Europe’s largest digital transformation trade show. Leading multinationals and the smallest of startup companies took the opportunity to showcase their products and services related to this new technological revolution that aims to change the way we live and work… Or maybe not?
Three years ago, Gartner predicted that by 2017 CMOs will spend more money on IT than CIOs. And so far it appears that his prediction is on track to come true. The reason is that, although the opposite may seem true, (successful) marketing is all about analyzing the largest possible number of data and variables, which allow you to shape behaviors, reactions, preferences and trends to develop the right products and messages that lead consumers or customers to purchase those products. Today, technology has given us the ability to capture vast amounts of data, which are held by the CIO. These data are unstructured and impossible to manage.
These data are useless to the CMO, who must process them to turn them into understandable information. And even then, this enormous quantity of information would be impossible to process because humans lacks the physical capacity to effectively utilize the amount of information that can be received in a day. You have to place the information in the right context, to establish relationships between all the available information, and turn it into knowledge, so that it can be used to support decision making and thus reduce response or action time.
Organizations need knowledge, not data
This situation is particularly noticeable in Wi-Fi networks. Each access point can gather data on the IP addresses of connected devices, when they connect and how long they connect for, report the location (probably in coordinates) of the access point accessed by the device, provide navigation lists and a whole host of other technical data. However, all this data does not constitute a valid form of information on which to base decisions and take action. And if it isn’t in the case of a single device, imagine what happens in large spaces where the flow of people is in the thousands or hundreds of thousands.
The interesting thing about technology is the way in which it can help to increase business. In this case, how it can be used to understand customer behavior and encourage buying. The wealth of information gathered by the access points, managed by the CIO, represent an incredible opportunity for many sectors when big data analysis techniques are correctly applied. It then becomes possible to transform terabytes of unstructured data into accessible organized information (knowledge) that the CMO can use to significantly improve his strategies, even building one-to-one campaigns that aim to reach users and consumers wherever they might be. If you combine geolocation techniques with all the information pouring into social media networks, the real-time knowledge you possess is so powerful that it allows you to know pretty much anything and act in accordance with that knowledge. And all this using only public authorized information, since the users themselves are responsible for uploading it onto social networks (with their own user-defined privacy criteria). So, as long as the information is used properly, no legal issues would come up.
Like it or not, we live in a connected world and technology offers enormous possibilities that weren’t even conceivable some years ago. What we need to do now is to change the paradigm and start seeing technology as an important driver of business growth, when aligned with business needs, rather than viewing it as mere infrastructure. This is exactly what Gartner predicted three years ago.
Teldat possesses the infrastructure, tools and knowledge to offer organizations of all sizes (including SMEs and SMBs) the necessary solutions to meet this change of vision.
And so it seems that, at least in this respect, Gartner was right again.
A new year begins once more. Two things can happen when we review the figures for the previous year: the results may be good or we have not achieved the expectations set at the beginning of the year. In both cases, everything must start again from scratch and you can start to feel a little unsettled by the prospect of the uncertainty of what lies down the line. If we did well, we lose that safety net sensation that the results give us. And if we did badly, then we look to the New Year for change and encouraging results.
At Teldat, we come under the first case. The year that is departing has left us with a very good set of results, reflecting the three consistently upheld tenets of our President: Perseverance in abundance, lots of talent and unlimited hard work. If we add to this a knack for knowing how to be in the right place at the right time (which some put down to luck and others to experience), then the results are not only good but also well-deserved.
And now we have to start over, with that familiar start-of-the-year-feeling that makes us wonder whether we will be able to do it again. “Yes” can be the only answer to this question and we must start now by writing down the results of the coming year. And the only way to conquer our fear of the blank page is to write a series of workable goals with the same level of enthusiasm and effort as every year.
We have the following objectives for 2016:
- The first concerns the most important part of our company: our Customers. And here we emphasize the word Customers because (although it’s true that in our market it’s not companies that have customers but rather the supposed customers that have suppliers) a key feature of Teldat’s success and an essential feature of our business model is our involvement in the projects undertaken by the parties using our technology. That is why we can consider them Customers (in the traditional sense) and one of our objectives, the first and most important of them, is to work with our customers and for them on a continual basis with the same dedication.
- The second has to do with technology, the soul of our company: 2016 will undoubtedly be the year of consolidation for the new products developed and launched in 2015 (Cloud Management, Wi-Fi, be.IP, SD-WAN) and for new product launches (On-Board, Industrials/Utilities, new cloud applications), many of them aimed at solving the complex needs of our customers in specific vertical sectors.
- The third concerns our company, its business growth and scope. It’s a long time since we left Spanish borders and started expanding Teldat’s international business (with the incorporation of our German branch). During this time we have expanded into more than thirty-five different countries and operate on four out of five continents. But that is not enough. This year we intend to go even further; to increase our penetration in some of those markets, for us still emerging, and to be recognized as the global supplier that we already are, even though we don’t have as many means as some of our competitors to trumpet the news.
These are our guidelines for the coming year to be reviewed in a little under a year, when we expect to achieve, at the very least, a similar set of results to the year now past right.
We would like to wish all our readers a very happy 2016. For Teldat, the year ahead gives us another chance to get it right.