The fourth industrial revolution is upon us. Are you ready?
Organizations around the world are in various stages of a digital transformation that is redrawing the global business landscape.
Some call it a fourth industrial revolution – one where the Internet of Things (IoT) and powerful software harness massive amounts of information, transforming the way every business operates.
Even if you’ve never dabbled in computer code before, companies of all sorts now require software capabilities to make smarter products and services. Not surprisingly, a change of this magnitude is driving quite a bit of uncertainty.
A recent Digital Transformation Survey conducted by Dell Technologies assessed the thoughts and viewpoints of some 4,000 business leaders in 16 countries. It found that 45 percent of respondents are afraid of becoming obsolete within five years. Nearly half (48 percent) said they don’t know what their industry will look like in three years. A mere 5 percent of those surveyed said they would classify themselves as digital leaders.
Given these startling stats, what’s an IT leader to do? It’s a complex issue, to be sure. But I believe there are three ways to quickly advance your digital transformation:
Elevate the conversation. It may seem obvious, but the core of any digital transformation should be simply talking about what an IT transformation means for you. There’s a twofold approach to making this happen. For one, IT leaders need to start broader conversations about the new role of IT in the organization, and how it’s essential to growing the business. It also requires a change in perception: We must see ourselves as the transformational catalyst, and partner, for our customers on their journey instead of just a technology fixer.
Invest accordingly. According to the survey, 73 percent agree that a centralized technology strategy needs to be a priority for their business, and 66 percent are planning to invest in IT infrastructure and digital skills leadership. Advancing a digital transformation means understanding that every company must have the in-house tech and talent to carry the conversation through to reality.
Ready, set, code. Has your organization never so much as looked at a line of code? That will need to change, as a key aspect of a successful digital transformation means thinking and acting like a software company. The survey findings support this idea, with almost three quarters (72 percent) of respondents saying they are now expanding their software development capabilities in order to advance their digital business transformation.
Clearly, the role of IT in a digital world is more essential than ever, and continues to evolve in new and exciting ways. Most businesses are still at the beginning of their digital transformation, so I recommend that you get started now on the big opportunities of the future.
In the meantime, I encourage you to read the full report here to see how you stack up against 4,000 other business leaders from the survey, and watch a recent presentation that chairman and chief executive Michael Dell recently gave at Dell EMC World about the next industrial revolution.