“That’s how we’ve always done it,” is a standard phrase often spoken with pride by business owners and senior executives regarding the machine-like processes and procedures of their successful business model. Today, in this climate of accelerated change, this expression could now signify the death knell for organizations either resistant to or unprepared for change. An attachment to the past can leave organizations lagging far behind their competitors. With the advent of IoT, digitalization, and agile SaaS (News - Alert) tools, our expectations regarding the time gap from the statement of need to fulfillment of that need have been pared down from weeks or months to days and hours.
Digitalization has now become a basic need for sustaining a successful business. Digitalization can drive enterprise architecture transformation with agile processes and faster development of solutions and products. It unleashes innovation, expanding services, and unparalleled customer experiences. Digital transformation can enhance customer value; a key driver to success in any market. ValueBlue, a leader in the enterprise architecture space, recognizes that agility is now imperative in redefining the enterprise business model. CTO, Jordy Dekker shares, “Cloud, digitalization, and SaaS is the technology triad that is driving the paradigm shift from a traditional, top-down model, to one that thrives on collaboration, continuous innovation, integration, and delivery.”
The Challenges of Transformation
The process of transformation can be fraught with difficulties and complexity. Businesses that are unable to swiftly adopt new digital innovations and transform their business model will lose their competitive edge.
With all of the elements and factors involved in transformation, businesses can find it difficult to stay on track and prioritize. Many businesses find that their processes and technology simply aren’t ready for digitalization. Given the pace of change today, a business must develop an agile mindset to remain sustainable, appropriating the right technologies to stay nimble enough to compete in today’s marketplace.
Trading in the bureaucratic business model for enterprise agility
Agility, by definition, is the power to move quickly and easily, with nimbleness. While ‘agility’ may seem like a corporate buzzword, in actuality the success of digital business transformation will depend upon developing agility across the entire enterprise as a practice and a cultural mindset. Business agility replaces the bureaucratic model, where decision-making takes much longer due to the multiple chains of command, and with a hierarchy of roles that are more rigid and less connected.
Conversely, enterprise agility removes complexity, quickly responding to changing opportunities and needs, and delivering new value into production frequently and when necessary. Agility allows IT teams to pre-empt change and innovation for an organization. The key for business advancement is the implementation of an agile infrastructure that supports continuous innovation while maintaining safety and security.
Becoming an agile enterprise
Enterprise-wide agility starts by examining the current operating model. A clear current status blueprint, with insight into functionalities, capabilities, process flows, and existing tech stack will guide decision-making and the transformation process. You can’t transform a complex system that you don’t fully understand. An enterprise becomes agile by making continuous, steady, and iterative steps that take it ever closer to its target. According to Wilko Visser, CEO of ValueBlue, “It is a strategic balancing act of remaining operational while continuously transforming with ‘just enough’ infrastructure.”
5 Trademarks of Agile (News - Alert) Organizations
McKinsey & Company conducted a survey of 2,000 business leaders in six sectors regarding the importance of enterprise agility and found that 75% of respondents placed agility as a top 3 priority, with 40% currently conducting an organizational agility transformation. In addition to highlighting a time-to-market reduction of at least 40%, these 5 trademarks were defined as components of successful agile enterprises.
Strategy - A shared customer-focused, purpose and vision intent upon creating value for all stakeholders. There is personal and emotional investment across the entire customer cycle, seizing opportunities as customer preferences change.
Structure - Traditional hierarchy is replaced with a network of empowered teams in active partnerships. The result is an engaged community with high standards of alignment, accountability, expertise, transparency, and collaboration. Collaboration is the cornerstone of transformation success, leading to ingenious solutions, clear roles, governance, and rapid development and delivery of new products and solutions.
Process - An environment of rapid decision and learning cycles, iteration, and experimentation. Teams deliver products/solutions in 1-2 week intervals rather than months, with the daily review, input, and open discussions.
People - There is a dynamic people model that ignites passion in a cohesive community, with shared leadership, entrepreneurial drive, and fluid role mobility.
Technology - The appropriation of nextgen-enabling technology with evolving architectures, systems, tools, development, and delivery practices. Agile enterprises deploy advanced software designed to connect disparate silos into cohesive platforms that accelerate agility, collaboration, and innovation; aligning IT and business initiatives.
Agility requires the right technology
To attain agility across a whole enterprise and achieve the true benefits of a collaborative and highly responsive corporate community, the right technology must be in place and all systems coordinated. Agile enterprise architecture tools must enable tech leaders and architects to plan, collaborate, and manage digital transformation and innovation based upon real-time data insights. SaaS platforms that combine previously disparate silos create a cohesive, intuitive dashboard that combines apps, processes, and data for unparalleled insights.
ValueBlue created their collaborative BlueDolphin SaaS platform tool for enabling agile business transformation. The platform brings together processes, applications, data, and infrastructure in one intuitive platform that accelerates digital transformation and innovation. With one central, shared data repository, BlueDolphin can enable easy collaboration, planning, and management for all users across the enterprise, aligning business and IT. Powerful visualizations enable accurate current state assessments, robust insights, impact analysis, and complete context to promote better-informed decisions across the entire enterprise. ValueBlue has been recognized by Gartner Magic Quadrant as one of sixteen acknowledged EA tools worldwide.
The Agile Enterprise paradigm is replacing the complexity of the traditional business model. With customer satisfaction as the core focus, this model of collaborative and empowered teams, coupled with powerful SaaS platforms and tools is creating a new corporate environment. The truly agile organization engages and values the input of all stakeholders and greatly accelerates innovation and time to market.