This Global Enterprise Agility month, experts explain how Agility is essential for digital transformation and accelerating business operations amid continued industry developments and how organisations can improve their ability to rapidly adapt to their ever-changing environment and customer needs.
Daniel Hutley, The Open Group® Architecture Forum Director says:
Technology is becoming increasingly ingrained in everyday life and an overwhelming number of businesses are adopting digital into their operations. This Enterprise Agility month, it’s critical for businesses to realise that as the digital age is growing, Agile teams have never been so important. This is because Agile teams are driving the enterprise’s digital transformation, by inventing new business models, delivering superior customer experience, developing digital products and architecting highly-automated operating systems.
There has been a significant swell of rapid Agile adoption over the last two years but while Agile is growing throughout organisations as a strategic priority, communicating and implementing Agile methodologies will need to be rethought and reformulated as it comes to operate on new scales. Implementing standards such as The Open Group Open Agile Architecture™ (O-AA) Standard is one-way businesses can do this, as formal coordination is essential to ensure positive holistic outcomes derive from decision making.
As we get deeper into the digital age, and enterprises further encourage Agile into business operations, the next wave of Agile headlines might be all about how enterprises are making it part of the fabric of their business, not just something practised by individual teams. What’s more, having a standardised Agile business-led approach means that digital enterprises will be more equipped to work together to embrace new technologies and advance operations, essential for the technological future.
Gareth Hutchins, Director, Solution Architecture – Europe and North America, OpenText says:
The key to enterprises being truly agile and adapting in any environment lies in successfully managing and understanding all the information within the data each and every business sits on.
The amount of data in the world continues to grow at an incredible rate. In fact, IDC suggests that by 2025, there will be a massive 163 zettabytes of data – a dramatic rise from 4.4 zettabytes back in 2013. This creates both a challenge and an opportunity for businesses as the insight held in data will help to improve decision making, enhance productivity and drive innovation. So, it is not only imperative that big data analytics is a key discussion point during Global Enterprise Month but enterprises embed big data analytics within their business to unlock the information held within their data.
The critical component in 2022 is understanding that while enterprises have been analysing their data for many years, the tools they used were not designed for the vast growth in the volume and types of new data being created. By using the latest analytics technology, enterprises will be able to adapt, grow and take a fresh view of their business and customers.
There are a number of different types of analytics that can help enterprises make their data analysis-ready, such as descriptive, diagnostic, predictive or prescriptive analytics. The area we are seeing most growth is in businesses using AI-powered analytics and the strength of this analytics solution is that it will get smarter and more accurate over time as it continually learns from the more interactions it has with data.
Paul Chapman, EVP at Endava says:
Agile organisations operate differently from traditional ones, often organised in a network structure which is less hierarchical, and consequently need different hiring and retention strategies. Reframing first who agile organisations would consider the ideal hire is an important consideration. They must re-evaluate what characteristics are needed to flourish in these environments; such as independent thought and willingness to empower others.
To identify and attract such individuals, particularly in light of the Great Resignation, companies should consider people from non-traditional backgrounds. While hard skills can often be taught, fresh perspectives can be a compelling addition to your company. By prioritising character and lived experiences among employees, agile companies can attract people they previously might not have, who can add real value to the company’s ability to deliver meaningful solutions. To facilitate such a hiring approach, open mindedness from recruitment and leadership when building teams is essential.
Hiring well is vital, but to then retain agile enabled individuals, organisational leadership needs to afford employees a level of autonomy. The best people need to be taught, guided, led. But not managed. They also need space to learn continually, be recognised for their aptitudes and to grow beyond their role. Siloing staff into certain functions and pre-determined disciplines runs counter to allowing people to flourish in agile teams. Combine this all with a ‘talent density’ approach, where companies hone in on fewer numbers of higher quality recruits with more appropriate attributes, and you have a powerful cocktail. When hiring effectively, often less is more.
Jason Tooley, VP Informatica says:
Companies are overwhelmed by data that is increasing exponentially and a siloed business approach that is impacting their ability to become data-driven. In fact, only 38% say they know where all of their customer data is stored. The data is locked in technology or organisational silos, and the fragmentation of data makes it difficult and costly for companies to be agile in responding to customers’ expectations and improve operational efficiency. This results in poor customer experiences and lost opportunities to further customer engagement.
This Global Enterprise Agility Month, organisations should take the time to develop a clear and comprehensive data strategy that will help them unlock the value in their data to drive their business forward and enhance customer and supplier engagement. AI and analytics fuel innovation, but this isn’t possible when business users are starved of high-quality, trusted data. Truly agile businesses will democratize data across their enterprise, empowering line of business users with greater access to high-quality data and AI models so they spend less time looking for or understanding data and more time making great decisions by being data-driven. By leveraging tools such as data marketplaces, organisations can maintain high levels of data governance and security while enabling data-driven decisions to streamline operations, accelerate time to market and drive superior customer experience.
Data democratization brings the power of your data to the business and technology organisations to execute data-driven strategies. By rethinking how the business understands, stewards , and utilises data you can make better, faster decisions and reap the benefits of a more agile business.
Lyndon Hedderly, Director of Customer Solutions at Confluent says:
The demands and expectations of customers today are very high. Gartner states that customer experience drives over two-thirds of customer loyalty, outperforming price and brand appeal combined. The issue comes with how well brands can successfully transition themselves to match these customer expectations and stay competitive.
We must remember that businesses will only truly match the expectations of modern consumers by delivering a frictionless experience every time, which relies on data, or more specifically, real-time data and automation.
For most businesses, data remains stuck in static databases – systems designed to handle data at rest and not data in motion. However, companies need a new way to handle data – one that supports collecting a continuous flow of data from across the business, between apps, databases, SaaS layers and cloud providers. They need something that links modern and valuable legacy services together in real-time without impacting ageing infrastructure. Ultimately, data needs to flow efficiently and effectively between modern and heritage applications.
Implementing a platform and layer to allow data to move fluidly will link all data points together in real-time, no matter where it resides in an organisation’s IT infrastructure – from the cloud to on-premise environments. This will enable businesses to cut across infrastructure silos, allowing systems to continually react, respond and adapt to an ever-evolving business in real-time.