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Digital disruption - leader or follower?

Divina Paredes | July 5, 2016
Build your foundations now, cloud is the platform for digital transformation, advises Louise Francis of IDC.

When IDC surveyed New Zealand companies asking if they have been digitally disrupted, 72 per cent of organisations said 'yes', with 9 per cent describing the impact as 'greatly impacted'.

Twenty six per cent said 'not yet' but expect it to happen in the next two years, while 2 per cent said 'not yet - no change expected'.

"I actually think those 2 per cent are dreaming, unless they are already in the optimised space," says Louise Francis, research manager for IT spending, IDC New Zealand.

By optimised space, she means the organisations have reached the top of the cloud maturity space and believe "they are best in class in terms of innovation and in being a transformation engine".

But then, says Francis, even if organisations are already in the optimised space, their industries are going to change.

"They still have to change, so disruption is a reality of life," says Francis, in her keynote at the recent Huawei Cloud Conference in Auckland.

Digital transformation has reached critical mass in New Zealand, she states.

She says the company's research around this, shows how workloads are now shifting into hybrid cloud.

This year or early next year, the scales will tip from on premise or traditional use of outsourcing to cloud, to hybrid cloud.

In this environment, think about how to become the lead dog, she told the conference delegates. "Build the foundations now."

The lead dog is ahead of the team and sets the pace, she states. They have qualities of intelligence, initiative and common sense. They also have the ability to follow the trail in bad conditions.

She puts forth two choices for today's enterprise - as a 'lead dog' or a T-Rex.

Francis explains why cloud transformation is critical to digital transformation.

"Digital transformation (DX) is the continuous process by which enterprises adapt to, or drive, disruptive changes in their customers and markets or external ecosystems."

This is done, she says, by leveraging digital competencies such as cloud, to innovate new business models, products and services that seamlessly blend digital and physical and business and customer experience - all while improving operational efficiencies and organisational performance.

The cloud drives these disruptive changes, she states. "The goal is to become the disruptor, not the disrupted."

Cloud and DX predictions

To help organisations in this environment, she shares some of IDC's predictions on how cloud computing will affect New Zealand over the next two to three years.

Cloud first: "The cloud will be the default option," she declares.

Cloud is the platform for digital transformation: Almost a third of organisations will be operating under a cloud-first mode. Currently 60 to 70 per cent of companies in the optimised space actually have a cloud-first approach to technology she says.


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