Digital transformation should evolve from simple reporting and passive actions based on analyzed trends to real-time reporting. With the greater use of Internet of Things and Big Data Analysis, the system will be able to provide information about behaviors with more than 90 percent confidence thus be prepared for prompt and balanced response, almost in an instant.
Digital transformation isn’t just some fashion trend or technological hype. It is a global change in the way we live. This is nothing new or unknown to a large number of us. Our personal and business lives are changing every day under the influence of digital technology.
If we leave aside “us” as individual users, digital transformation opens up many opportunities for other participants in this game. For companies that act as integrators, it signifies retaining and increasing presence in existing markets, but also creating and entering a new ones.
For companies that are on the side of the users of these advancements, it is an opportunity to automate and optimize existing business processes and reduce costs by implementing new technological solutions. This, in turn, strengthens their participation in a lively market race.
So far, we have understood that digital transformation is important. Why is it so?
In Serbia, 54% of the population i.e. 4.7 million people use Internet. There are over 3.83 billion Internet users worldwide. Ten new ones appear every second. Only when we add 11 billion connected devices (not including computers, tablets and other smart devices) that also send some data and communicate with each other we can realize what amount of data is exchanged, searched for or collected. And this quantity is constantly growing.
The more data is out there, the more important is the role of digital transformation in creating proper information out of this enormous amount of data. In the past, this role was mainly reduced to reporting but in 2018 it is much more than that.
To use one example as an illustration of potential. The automotive industry is very advanced when it comes to technology and is very focused on investment in research and development in order to further automate all processes. Nevertheless, only 5% of the data collected from autonomous vehicles is really used to help making conclusions.
There lie great possibilities. Digital transformation should evolve from simple reporting and passive actions based on analyzed trends to real-time reporting. With the greater use of Internet of Things and Big Data Analysis, the system will be able to provide information about behaviors with more than 90 percent confidence thus be prepared for prompt and balanced response, almost in an instant.
Artificial intelligence will make IT smarter, more productive and more useful
An investment in the development of artificial intelligence and machine learning, especially in the technology that collects data, is another expected trend. Cameras will not be used only for seeing but also for understanding the picture. Microphones will not only record but will be listening as well. An appropriate teaser of how it might look like is usage of the applications for recognizing the songs.
Blockchain technology will be even more powerful
Further development of blockchain technology will give transactions even greater integrity and stability. It will strengthen the algorithm which will, for its part, guarantee security. This will further encourage more companies to participate in digital transformation.
In light of these trends, how an integrator should be positioned?
To best explain this, I will use an example of a successful digital transformation conducted by Apple. In 2007, Steve Jobs started developing Web 2.0 and Ajax applications with all, at that time, modern open web standards. As this did not prove to be a successful way to advance, Apple switched to a closed system and introduced the obligation of payment for its applications. Community of Linux and Unix developers, people sharing their know-how with everyone, predicted that such a concept would collapse, but this did not happen.
The community, which accepts Apple’s development, gets the opportunity to use free tools for developing applications and functionalities for them. The ease of finding solutions and the existence of ready-made applications is what makes Apple an ecosystem that maintains itself with community that remained coherent, compact and ever growing. It has preserved the Apple Store as it is and helped it to further develop. This should always be on our mind!
In addition to computers that maintain the Apple Store functional, everything else is a concept and the concept won. Apple Store overcomes the classic form of digital transformation and becomes an intangible good that shows what way of thinking should be followed in the future.
For many integrators, it’s too late to get into development for Play Store or Apple Store in order to find new markets for themselves. This does not mean that there are no opportunities. By opening their own market place with quality plug-ins, applications and tools new values can be offered. The market recognizes quality and can reward it by giving good ratings and comments. With the increasing importance and impact of the store, opportunities for new business are expanding.
This powerful approach should not keep us in the domain of mobile applications, but pave a way to the application across all IT to further develop the business.
In order to be more productive we should apply the building blocks concept
Blocks i.e. parts of the code or modules are “packaged” so that an integral solution works. Therefore, the development of software solutions need not and should not always begin from scratch. This also applies to hardware solutions and combinations of two.
Building blocks and especially their ability to be reused are gaining in importance as the size of the data warehouses grows.
From the example of Apple, every firm that creates software solutions needs to learn that there is an interest in developing blocks that will not be charged, so that a community can develop around it. Due to the reuse, the software becomes more powerful and inevitably opens new business opportunities.
Motto “There is an app for that” should become “There is an API for that”. API as an open system, a place where building blocks are placed, positively influences the connectivity that is the paradigm of the 21st century and enables the development of a self-service concept. All of this changes the role of IT in every company.