Digital Transformation – A Global Phenomenon?

Digital Transformation

This post first appeared on Ignitho

Digital Transformation is the process of transforming business and organisational activities, processes, competencies and models, whether commercial, social or public.

Recently, we have heard of many mid-market and large enterprises finding their way to adopt digital transformation. There is immense pressure on today’s IT leaders to implement digital transformation but there are many misconceptions associated with it.

Creating a Digital OS: faster, cheaper, better

The most common misconception is that digital transformation is just about implementing digital technologies. In reality ‘digital’ is the vehicle for making deep changes to the operating culture: more customer-focused, agile and responsive to emerging needs and market opportunities. It is not just about taking your existing business completely online, though that may be the most visible component of a digital strategy. It is a lot more than creating websites, YouTube channels or engaging in social media.

Digital in is a synonym for the pace of change occurring in today’s world, driven by the rapid adoption of technology. Digital an ‘operating system’ through which we create new competitive advantage and how the enterprises transform to keep pace with rapidly developing customers and markets.

According to the 2016 state of Digital Transformation reports , improved customer experience is a top driver for digital transformation. The best global example is Amazon, where the customer experience is central to everything they do,

“We’ve had three big ideas at Amazon that we’ve stuck with for 18 years and the reason we’re successful: Put the Customer first, Invent and be Patient” Jeff Bezos

If you want to go far, go together

But transforming an established organisation without a partner that brings new Digital capabilities and itself is Digital is very tough. There is only one Amazon. The prevailing culture will limit and stifle innovation, change will only emerge painfully and expensively, if at all. What is needed is a new breed of partner, one that embodies ‘Digital’ and provides agility and responsiveness the client lacks but sorely needs.

Ignitho Technologies is one such UK based technology innovation company. It has helped drive the adoption of technology innovation for enterprises applying emerging technologies like Machine Learning and Virtual Reality. Through their agile development models along with the technology consulting practice and the unique outcome-based solutions approach they have helped enterprises cost-effectively accelerate their digital transformation.

Digital is a global phenomenon

But Digital Transformation is not a Silicon Valley or a Western phenomenon anymore, it has become a global trend, a source of competitive advantage for States, start-ups and corporations. Developing nations like India, China and Brazil are now engaged in the race to create the next generation of digital startups in areas as diverse as AI/ML, Big Data & Analytics, Mobile Commerce and Cloud computing. According to a joint report by NASSCOM and market intelligence firm Blueocean, India alone has 500+ data analytics companies and the market is expected to grow to $2.3 billion by 2017-18 and will grow 8x to $16 billion in the next few years by 2025. And these are not simply for the home market, they are focused on the global market. And they have unique competitive advantages in skill-sets, cost-structures and culture, ushering in a new generation of frugal innovations that out-compete anything available in the West.

“I think frugality drives innovation, just like other constrains do. One of the only ways to get out of tight box is to invent your way” Jeff Bezos

Digital startups in Chile and Brazil are already contributing to the global digital innovation eco-system, accelerating digital transformation and opening-up new possibilities. Recently France too joined the brigade of digital innovators by launching an English language startup program (French Tech) to attract the best digital entrepreneurs from around the globe. This signals not only a shift in WHERE digital innovation happens but eventually, WHO leads and HOW it is done, the topic for our next blog in the series.

Brendan Dunphy Former Director, Center for Strategic Technology, Accenture

Brendan Dunphy is an entrepreneur, consultant & social innovator specializing in strategy, innovation and transformation with a particular interest in startup collaboration with corporates to create new value for both parties. He has above 35 years of experience for consulting in strategy, innovation and talent development. Read More