- Dec 5, 2018,
“We’re having another meeting? Seriously?”
“Yes, at four o’clock in the conference room.”
“On a Friday?”
“Yeah, finance had some questions about the terms and four o’clock is the only time sales could make it.”
“Why is sales coming to the meeting?”
“Because…well, you know I’m not entirely sure.”
Sound familiar? That’s because conversations like the one above take place almost every day in organizations and enterprises around the world as they consider the next steps for their digital transformations. These company wide changes often include many stakeholders with different ideas, priorities and timelines. At a high-level, a digital transformation is a good thing, a necessity to keep up with the ever-shifting demands and priorities of today’s business climate.
But in reality, the transformation itself can feel like a long, grueling slog with no end in sight. Digital transformations are often disruptive with new products and technologies, re-tooling, integrating new solutions, providing training…it can feel overwhelming for everyone in an organization.
So what does that mean for the CIOs responsible for guiding their organization through this transformation? Is there anything that can be done to reduce friction and create real, quantifiable momentum? Fortunately, there is. Picking up steam and making meaningful changes is well within the reach…you just have to be willing to examine the challenge in a slightly different way.
Streamlining Deployment through Partnership
Research shows that CIOs prefer to move quickly once a decision is made. Agility has always been a strength in business. Today, that combination of speed and willingness to move has never been more valuable. By moving quickly after a decision has been made, CIOs can implement substantive change before the organizational earth shifts beneath them. That is to say that waiting too long to implement change can create institutional paralysis, where the factors that led to a decision yesterday are wildly different today and priorities again must be reset. That said, be cautious not to confuse “moving quickly” with being sloppy. Making uninformed decisions or snap judgements based on incomplete information can often lead to a waterfall of negative ramifications.
By moving quickly after a decision has been made, CIOs can implement meaningful change before the organizational earth shifts beneath them.
Believe it or not, moving quickly in the age of digital transformation is most often accomplished by reducing the burden on internal resources and finding partners who can help. Think of it like this: if you needed to sail across the ocean you’d first locate a map and compass. Then you’d likely find a seaworthy ship, gather your crew and set sail. What you almost certainly wouldn’t do is start your journey by gazing at the stars and trying to create a new way to coordinate navigational direction from scratch. Organizations at the forefront of most every industry are viewing their digital transformations in much the same way, asking at every turn,”what options already exist to move us further ahead and faster.” To take the metaphor even further: it is no longer essential that you draw the map yourself when the world is full of expert cartographers.
Quick wins – that is to say making real, positive change without getting bogged down – most often take the same form as the journey above. True, some applications and integrations need to be homegrown out of necessity. While unlikely, it is entirely possible there isn’t a solution available for exactly what you need. But our experience has been that very few business challenges need to be addressed by a completely customized solution, and those that do need customization can often be built more efficiently over an existing framework.
Homegrown versus Ready-Made
In the probable event that there is a third-party provider capable of meeting your requirements or providing a solid foundation for your needs, you’d be foolish not to give them appropriate consideration. The rise of SaaS and adoption of cloud-based technology in the enterprise means that there are more choices available to address even the most complicated needs. Even better, providers can quickly introduce domain expertise to the equation that you may lack.
In the probable event that there is a third-party provider capable of meeting your requirements or providing a solid foundation for your needs, you’d be foolish not to give them appropriate consideration.
For example, if you choose to build an application using internal resources then a significant amount of time and money will be invested not just in planning but also in research around security, infrastructure, and integration with existing systems. It may be months (or even years) before a made-from-scratch system is ready for use…and at that point who knows what your organization will look like! Conversely, a growing number of providers have already solved these problems and have made those solutions available to customers and clients. From server stacks to ongoing patches and maintenance, from integrations to reporting, well-tested offerings are already available in the market. Even better, many of these options are “plug and play,” giving the office of the modern CIO a more efficient – more effective – way of bringing meaningful change to their companies.
What’s in it for the modern CIO
The advantages of finding partners and providers to work with should be clear. First, you’re likely to arrive at a better solution in a shorter time-frame. Second, this solution is almost assuredly going to be less expensive and less resource-intensive than cobbling it together yourself. And third, and perhaps most important, the gains made today have a compounding effect on tomorrow. More immediate realized efficiencies give you and your organization the time and energy to go solve other problems, driving your digital transformation forward.
But what about the office of the CIO? What’s in it for you and your team? Simple: movement and momentum, the very definition of a quick win, gives you internal capital you might need for another day. Instead of being seen as struggling to keep up, you’re taking the lead on business-critical initiatives. Instead of the hallways echoing with complaints of IT being too slow or bloated, your department is viewed as the very thing driving the company forward. Nimble, forward-thinking, helping everyone have a better day at work as the result of process and infrastructure improvements. Quick wins through partnership put you in a position to lead with purpose instead of follow without impact.
Bringing it all together for your next Quick Win
The right partnership can mean the difference between increasing speed in your digital transformation or getting ‘stuck in the mud’. If you’d like to learn more about how such a partnership can provide the quick win you’re looking for, our team at Capriza would welcome the chance to speak with you. Our plug-and-play platform streamlines and consolidates the approvals process, saving approvers significant amounts of time and companies significant amounts of money by fixing perhaps the most inefficient workflow in business. To learn more about how Capriza can partner with you to drive significant change quickly and safely, contact us here.