Chris Gabriel continues to explore the concept of the ‘Aerodynamic Business’. In this second of a two-part post, he looks at the four technology innovations that hold the key to adopting an Aerodynamic Business model.
Imagine your organisation in a wind tunnel. How would it fare? Is it already so streamlined that it needs only the most minor of tweaks, or would it disrupt the airflow of today’s complex global economy so much that it would struggle to gain or maintain forward momentum?
Whether a business is taking the first or the last steps toward aero dynamism, the smart exploitation of technology, more than ever, holds the key to competitiveness. When applied with real strategic intent, it can have a major impact on the way an organisation works and behaves.
The four pillars
I believe that every organisation can exploit technology to become more aerodynamic. The key is to use it to make business interactions, business decisions, business processes better and more effective, and operating business technology infrastructure as efficiently and effectively as possible - minimising the cost and complexity of making technology a real business differentiator.
Experience tells me that organisations seeking to develop Aerodynamic Business environments must focus on four key areas:
- Technology led business process innovation and improved productivity
- Better insights into business information and enhanced decision making
- ICT systems operational excellence and efficiency
- Exploitation of ‘partner’ delivered ICT services
Technology led business process innovation and improved productivity
Change the way the organisation does business, by transforming the way individuals interact, communications and collaborate. Enable people, process and technology work together to get the job done, building a new experience between the user and technology.
Better insights into business information and enhanced decision making
Take the mountain of data locked away in business systems and turn it into competitive differentiation. Unearth better insights into customers, supply chains, citizen needs, market trends, business financials, product supply – empower people with insight drawn from data the organisation already has.
ICT systems operational excellence and efficiency
Reduce complexity and the share of ICT budgets spent on running what you already have (on average 80% of the ICT budget). That will enable the business to spend more resources on putting in place more quickly the solutions it needs for future, innovation-driven success.
Exploit ‘partner’ delivered ICT services
Give ICT departments and lines of business the choice to adopt external services, exploiting new innovations such as the Cloud. In so doing, speed up access to new services and innovation, and reduce the burden of cost and complexity that is part and parcel of delivering everything in-house.
The solutions are out there
None of this need be ‘invented’. We live in challenging and exciting times and, as technology moves on apace, all of the required solutions and enabling devices are already available.
Tablet computing, smart devices and wireless broadband changing the users experience with ICT systems. Meanwhile innovations such as the cloud offer new consumption models for major ICT services and powerful analytics draw greater insights from the data businesses already have. On top of that video is becoming a ubiquitous form of communications, and enterprise social tools bring the power of collaboration to colleagues, customers and suppliers.
That all adds up to an opportunity to transform your organisation through technology – provided those innovations are integrated within a coherent strategic view.
In other words, the key to aero dynamism lies in drawing all this technology driven streamlining into an Aerodynamic Infrastructure.
What do you think? Is your business aeodynamic or dragging? let us know in the comments below.
Also look out for the next post in this series, coming soon, in which Chris demonstrates how these four technology innovations can come together to deliver an integrated, coherent ‘Aerodynamic Infrastructure’.