The ongoing COVID-19 socio-economic crisis has highlighted one more time that business agility is a critical success factor. During the pandemic, consumers have moved dramatically toward online channels, and companies and industries have responded in turn. Business leaders worldwide had to take quick actions to respond to the pandemic and its effects on customers, employees and their businesses overall. Thousands of companies had to craft crisis management plans, while many of them transitioned a significant part of their employees to virtual workspaces and increased their investments into new digital offerings for their customers by the same token.
Change is constant so organisations need the leadership and an infrastructure that can adapt, scale, analyse, automate transactions, respond and alert in real-time. What is new during these times, is that many of us are forced to work from home. Obviously, this applies to customers, employees, suppliers, and partners alike. We are connecting through the public cloud, rearranging ourselves with our families at home, and many of us miss social interactions with our colleagues and families.
At work, the pressure on supply chain management as increased drastically, business forecasting and scenario planning have generally become more difficult and less reliable as models race to catch-up.
Business leaders are increasingly embracing new technologies that support modern ways of working. The new normal is about strategically combining effective data storage and the right software to collect, process, and act on it which we call applications. This is all about cloud-native platforms to orchestrate their supply chains as well as role-specific dashboards empowering employees in their home offices and allowing for instant glimpses into the state of the enterprise. After all, as employees we now expect the same seamless experience which comes with an increased level of automation, well-orchestrated business processes, actionable information at our fingertips.
Digital adoption has taken a quantum leap
The disruption of COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies. Many businesses had to at least find temporary solutions to meet the new demands and whilst the transformation is ongoing, these changes transformed businesses forever. Recent studies suggest, remote working and collaboration has accelerated by a factor of 43, this was also disclosed in a recent report by McKinsey.
However, if a digital transformation remains a complicated and risky endeavour, when done correctly, it can lead to amazing, future-proof results. According to a new study by Nucleus Research in the past two years, cloud technology deployments delivered 4.01X the return-on-investment (ROI) compared to on-premises deployments, up from 3.2X during the previous two-year period and 2.5X faster recovery of initial investments, an increase expected to continue to grow rapidly as the COVID-19 pandemic accelerates cloud adoption.
One of the secret ingredients behind successful digital transformations is effective communication as well as support and understanding from leadership.
Here we have seen how technology can help finance executives with forecasting activity and translating strategic information in a digestible way, as explained by University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland HES-SO’s financial director, Arnaud Rey, in a recent video interview. Indeed, real-time access to financial reports increases the visibility of live financial data.
The next important ingredient for success, a coordinated and strategic approach for an integrated platform across all applications. Indeed, to fully benefit from the potential of AI and machine learning, the processes and data in place need to be secured first.
Western Digital is a great example of how to set new standards with Oracle Cloud. The storage company needed to make decisions fast, but with three legacy finance systems, it was hard to get a consistent, accurate view so It consolidated onto Oracle ERP Cloud to get a clear picture.
A number of drivers, like executive buy in, clear communication, effective collaboration, support from C-suite along with the right integrated platforms are essential contributors to the successful adoption of emerging technologies. For it is only then that AI and advanced analytics can make the most of your data and play an essential role in improving efficiency and effectiveness of decision making.