Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 67 - Page 76

Jacob Chacko , Regional Director –
Middle East , Saudi and South Africa , Aruba
Leadership Awareness – The starting point is rapid immersion in the top team to ensure they understand the opportunity , are aware of the associated risks , know what it takes to succeed , can prioritise what ’ s to be done , and maintain a clear dialogue with all stakeholders .
Open and Flexible Technology Options – Ensuring the adoption of open , agile , and secure technology choices that allow teams to pursue future options that may not have been considered initially . computing are enabling leaders to pursue and deliver experiments to drive 2x to 10x greater improvements across their businesses .
The Pursuit of Digital Innovation and Excellence – The increasingly central role of digital technologies demands that we raise digital literacy across the organisation and prioritise the rapid evolution of our digital capability to accelerate the adoption of a digital mindset and speed up the creation of digitally based products and services based on insights generated from data collected .
Embracing and Embedding Smart – The Edge is helping organisations embrace the true power of smart devices to deliver mass customization and deep personalisation of a range of user experiences . Rapid advancements in AI and ML are enabling the establishment of smart spaces and creating the opportunity for smart personalisation , adaptation , and continuous learning in the applications offered to users .
Emergence of New Businesses and Industry Sectors at the Edge – The focus on solutions tailored to customer needs is driving opportunities from the creation of new businesses to the birth of new trilliondollar industry sectors .
IT Alignment – Making sure the IT function can lead and deliver the journey to the Edge and has the capabilities to manage the demands , security challenges , and risks of an edge-based technology ecosystem .
Mindset and Digital Literacy – Driving organisationwide awareness of the shifts taking place in the marketplace and the new business paradigms being pursued , and building high levels of digital literacy and capability to deliver on the opportunity .
User Dialogue – Understanding expectations and concerns to ensure solutions genuinely meet the requirements of their intended users .
Business Case and Investment Funding – The true potential of the opportunity at the Edge will only reveal itself once solutions are in the field – the business case and investment funding strategy need to evolve in line with the evidence from the projects delivered .
Focused Project Approach – The pilot projects and experiments undertaken should be meaningful , should have clear goals , leadership , and dedicated resources , and should be delivered rapidly to ensure business focus , with rapid sharing of lessons learned to drive subsequent projects .
Call to Action
Capturing the Edge opportunity requires radical shifts in strategic thinking , an investment in developing deep digital experiences , experimentation with new business and revenue models , and evolution of the IT function . This change needs to be owned and driven from the C-suite . Such initiatives clearly require a vision , defined goals , and a robust delivery plan . However , before an organisation can start to articulate these , most need to go through a preparatory phase to ensure they are ready to embark on a transformation of this scale .
Seven key enablers of that preparatory process are identified below :
The opportunity at the Edge represents a new way of conceiving business – designing from the outside in and putting the organisation ’ s focus on what happens at the Edge to maximise value for customers and employees , while also driving operational efficiency . Although it may seem that the concept is in its infancy , the nature of competition and the exponential rate of advancement in the underlying technologies mean that the pace of adoption will accelerate . This will lead in turn to transformational shifts in the experiences created and the business and revenue models adopted across every sector . For the C-suite , the call to action is clear . The only question is : how quickly can you respond to start building the future ? p
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