Five steps to become a data-driven business in India using technology
Every organization and industry in India are transforming. All are striving to move faster, become smarter with data and innovate more with technology. Digital transformation is happening at a lightning speed, and it is evident from the sheer growth of the digital processes across industries in India. This has become more significant especially during the last few years: today, digital transformation is a must-have. As organizations navigate this journey, they manage increasingly complex data and tasks. And while data is considered critical for any efficient operation, it also has the potential to become the number one barrier to transformation.
Data deluge is one of the many challenges businesses are facing while managing and processing the volume of data being generated. According to the recent Breakthrough study led by Dell Technologies, 84.8%Indian respondents worry that the opportunity to become a data-driven business will pass them by. Another way to put this is that at every business conference you attend, there is a chance more than half your peers are worrying about data.
Going deeper, 77.3% of Indian respondents are concerned they don’t have the necessary skills to progress a digital transformation. It is an interesting paradox. While technology is an enabler to human potential, the number of solutions and settings to navigate can overwhelm workers with too many choices. Professor Erik Brynjolfsson, Director of Stanford University’s Digital Economy Lab observed that national productivity measures have not increased in tandem with major advances in technology. It is interesting to note that the path out of the data labyrinth is often a mix of the right set of tools with a human perspective. Here are five steps to help you navigate your digital transformation:
- Have a clear shared vision of how digital transformation can help you realize your business goals.
Every IT problem starts with a business problem. Before laying down the foundation on how to deal with data, think about the challenges which are being addressed at the company. Once a business has that vision, they can articulate the right technology solution and partner with the IT experts to build a plan. It is not mandatory to follow an aggressive timeline. A phased approach accounts for the most important asset – people. 92% of Indian businesses have shared that they regard their people as their greatest asset. Giving them enough time to understand the strategy and align to it will help progress in the digital era.
2. Invest in appropriate edge and as-a-Service Strategies that can scale.
As-a-service experiences help ease or drop the infrastructure management burden on teams. According to Dell Technologies Global Data Protection Index research, around 84% of Indian businesses are willing to deploy as-a-service offerings to not only increase business agility but also simplify their digital transformation. When working with a flexible IT consumption model, businesses can operate with agility to control and scale their environment, adapting to different dynamics. Opportunities in the edge will allow a business to act on data near its point of creation to generate. With real-time data analysis, one can act faster and reduce the cost concerns associated with sending large amounts of data to a central location. This is especially true in industries such as retail, healthcare, and even public transportation.
3. Automate mundane tasks.
According to the Breakthrough Report, 25.8% of all Indian respondents acknowledged having mentally stimulating work. That shows that people would be willing to partner more with technology if the personal benefits are clear. By automating work, people are available to focus on what inspires them and on uncovering business opportunities. The curious mindset is a valuable skill for data analytics. And once the teams have enough time to look at the data with a strategic approach, the business leadership will be able to pave the way for insights-driven decisions.
4. Start with small-scale pilots.
69% of Indian businesses state that they do not have the motivation or energy to act on digital transformation in the workplace. To overcome apprehensions, the sandbox environment is perfect for the test-and-learn method. Through this, people feel safe, and businesses have better control over the impact. It is one of the best tactics to gain insights from analytics while stimulating people to adopt and publicize the successes.
5. Provide adequate coaching, mentoring, and reassurance.
Real breakthrough happens at the intersection of people and technology. Thus, it is paramount to recognize that while consumption-based IT models provide the necessary breathing room to teams, businesses will need to deploy them in ways that are sensitive to human behavior. 78% of the Indian businesses feel that the failure of their digital transformation programs is often due to their people. To overcome this barrier, it is critical to ensure that everyone is accessing the necessary tools and has enough training and resources to use them to their fullest. Business leaders must communicate and establish a platform where their employees contribute ideas and are heard. Lack of communication is one of the areas where respondents of the Breakthrough Report say their teams struggle the most.
Technology plays an important role in unlocking a company culture shift toward data-driven decisions. Once we augment human capabilities with automation and consumption-based IT, we are able to create new opportunities and experiences which excite our workforce. Businesses can then elevate their productivity to new heights and make sure they find purpose while delivering great outcomes.
(The author is Mr. Manish Gupta, Vice President and General Manager, Infrastructure Solutions Group, Dell Technologies India and the views expressed in this article are his own)