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What Digital Transformation Means to Me - An Americas Perspective

Posted by Tech Data on Jan 25, 2018 8:00:00 AM

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In part two of our digital transformation blog series, we asked leaders from the Americas region, “What does digital transformation mean to you?” Find out our team’s business insights and recommendations on how to navigate the evolving digital landscape in 2018.

Sam Oliver -  Internet of Things

Many would agree that Digital Transformation is driven by Millennials and their thirst for real-time access and real-time information.  While this is true, businesses are thirsty for real-time information as well… partly because their customers are demanding more and more information innovation and partly because of the efficiencies inherent is real-time data. For me, Digital Transformation (DT) is about transforming the organization’s culture. The potential for growth with DT is unquestionable, but it is still on the horizon. Businesses need to transform how they interact with their customers and the information that can be provided to fuel the growth in DT.  However, the barriers are still with the c-suite and the perceived need. DT is not a product or offering, but a destination where businesses must build and mature to become an elastic organization, able to change and respond to their customers’ demands.

Colin Blair - VP, Big Data & Analytics, the Internet of Things

For me, digital transformation is about disruption. The explosion of data, the pervasiveness of cloud computing, and the number of connected consumers have created opportunities for new companies and business models to disrupt the status quo. Board of directors are urging corporate executives everywhere to innovate and differentiate, to avoid being the next victim of Uber-like disruptions. Data management is a critical aspect of digital transformation. Generally speaking, companies have plenty of data, most of it digital, but few are putting that data to productive use. The banner of digital transformation is a call to arms to leverage data and disrupt, or else be disrupted. We have an excellent opportunity to help our vendors and channel partners specialize so that their customers will, in turn, innovate and grow.

Alex Ryals – VP, Security and Networking at Tech Data

When we’re looking at cyber security, digital transformation means several things.

First, it means customers will consume security solutions from their partners and vendors in a new way. Instead of purchasing the traditional perpetual licenses for an endpoint security solution or firewall, we will continue to see the emergence of subscription product sales, sold and renewed through digital cloud platforms. 

Second, digital transformation will accelerate new security technologies that leverage artificial intelligence engines and big data solutions to process collected security data instead of the traditional signature-based threat analysis. The collection of the raw security information from disparate digital systems will also evolve as security companies better integrate with one another via standard APIs.

Third, digital transformation will include the security of application workloads deployed in a hybrid on-premise and cloud architecture. These hybrid solutions will require protection of traditional and virtual infrastructure as well as containers and micro-services. Finally, digital transformation will involve a need to shift the network security perimeter from the datacenter firewall out to the endpoint devices which now include not just laptops and desktops, but mobile and IoT devices. Digital transformation means – and will continue to mean - many things to many people, but to security, it means more advanced capabilities to secure companies from would-be attackers.

Harish Sathisan, Director of Mobility Solutions, Tech Data

Digital transformation for organizations starts with a need to provide better, faster service to their customers (internal or external.) The need for faster better service is usually driven by two factors:

#1: To provide a clear value differentiator against the competition

#2: To increase productivity for internal resources

In today’s market conditions, the realization of an enterprise mobility strategy is an essential part of an organizations’ digital transformation journey. Let's explore mobility within an organizations internal and external facets.

Providing mobile access to internal employees

An enterprise mobile journey for internal use usually involves providing email access, mobile access to enterprise applications and increasing employee productivity by providing mobile access to a majority of the content. This allows employees to access and manage their workday from anywhere, via any device or across multiple devices.

To increase access across multiple platforms requires legacy modernization. This may include modernization of wireless infrastructure, modernization of backend systems, providing mobile access to existing enterprise applications, providing access for employee-owned devices to be able to securely access content while simultaneously managing said access as well as providing applications for employee use. 

Providing your competitive edge to end customers

In this day and age having a mobile facet rich in feature functionality that can generate revenue is not just a “nice to have” but a key requirement for your business to have a competitive edge.

Organizations understand it is extremely important to provide mobile or Omni-channel experience to the end customer. Consumerism and the proliferation of mobility solutions continue to raise the bar and expectations for all organizations to engage in mobile accessibility. Creating Omni-channel applications, releasing applications at a rapid pace, modernizing backend systems to integrate with APIs are just a few examples of digital transformations that are becoming the norm.

Investing in next-gen technology for enterprise mobility will also allow organizations to sustain or procure the lead in the market. Two buzz-worthy technologies to keep your eye on is Augmented Reality and Blockchain Technology, which will be key differentiators across many verticals.

To summarize, digital transformation starts with the need to provide better productivity and provide better value differentiation. The lowest hanging fruit to start providing that for most organizations is to invest in enterprise mobility.

For more information about how you can leverage digital transformation with your customers, contact your Tech Data representative today. 

Tags: Security, Cybersecurity, Internet of Things (IoT), Enterprise Mobility