Leaders around the globe are realising the business sustainability and growth limitations of not being in the cloud. It’s a lesson that may have been learnt given time, but one that has certainly been accelerated by the pandemic.
For those not convinced of its value, here are a few simple questions that should be answered:
- Competitiveness: Is your workforce productive and collaborative? Do you leverage your data to enhance customer service and acquire new customers? Have you optimised your operations for cost and efficiency?
- Resilience: Is your business able to respond to market pressures and opportunities with agility? Do you consider your organisation secure against rising IT threats?
There is a high possibility that many of your competitors are answering yes to most of these questions. If you are not, then reconsidering your business strategy should be an urgent priority.
For every answer, look to data
Unlocking and extrapolating value from data has clear top-line benefits. CIOs can double, or even triple, development velocity in the short term through an enhanced cloud-based data platform and more agile teams.
Morne Laubscher, CTO of Logicalis South Africa.
Long-term success can be heavily influenced by the effectiveness of a company’s approach to data. However, optimising data is an elaborate task. It includes developing approaches to data governance; redesigning processes as modular applications; and tapping into the benefits of flexible as well as scalable, cloud-based technology.
By focusing on building an intelligent digital architecture on a modern cloud estate, businesses activate data value and reap the rewards. By putting data at the centre of organisational evolution, businesses can gain clear insight across operations and be more responsive, making informed, timely decisions.
Being able to augment your traditional data infrastructure with scalable, innovative solutions like machine learning and artificial intelligence, historically only destined for the Fortune 500 and organisations with significant IT budgets, give any CIO the ability to accelerate and pivot their organisations through data-driven insights.
Responsiveness equates to relevance
Such responsiveness is vital in enhancing business agility, which essentially translates to swiftly adapting goods and services to meet evolving customer needs. It is clear that COVID-19 has forever transformed society and businesses, particularly in the adoption of digital. Some say this transformation resembles a “decade in days” shift, which is a very apt summation. These behavioural changes have reshaped consumer decision journeys and companies need to adapt fast or risk losing to those who have promptly and seamlessly transitioned to digital.
Companies already in the cloud can benefit from an increased pace of product development that directly aligns IT infrastructure with business goals and objectives. Additionally, they are able to scale IT processes up and down as needed, optimising IT asset usage. Also, of critical importance to businesses, post-pandemic, is business resilience – and security sits at the heart of this.
Security is a core tenet of resilience
Insider data breach incidents, whether accidental or malicious, are on the rise and is expected to increase by 25% this year. Even for companies that are already leveraging the host of opportunities presented through cloud computing, there are several others that can help businesses better define and deploy security technology to remove vulnerabilities, thereby reducing their risk of future cyber incidents.
What this demands is a holistic, architectural approach – one that is manageable, adaptable, responsive and developed with the right partner. Organisations that continue to adapt their approaches to security and invest in enabling, technologically sound models will do well to strengthen resilience.
Driving business strategy
A holistic cloud strategy is now a fundamental component of business strategy across progressive companies. Leaders are much more interested in the rapidly increasing technology opportunities presented. Accordingly, those who focus on better understanding how to leverage cloud innovations will find themselves on the winning track.
Where the challenge may lie…
The pace of innovation across public cloud vendors requires significant investment to interpret and translate innovations into solutions that meaningfully respond to business objectives. This investment is critical for businesses determined to secure relevance by staying at the forefront of technology.
Partnerships that empower
Partnering with an IT solutions advisor with a proven track record, trusted expertise and deep connections with reputable cloud vendors is critical to removing this challenge. It also enables access to the host of growing opportunities and an understanding of future technology trends that must be factored into business strategies. The right advisor can also be instrumental in leading businesses through the complexity of diverse technologies, helping them get ahead of their competitors.
In a dynamically evolving era, getting left behind is just not an option. So, can your business sustain itself and grow without the cloud? I think not.