Tony Mauro, Head of Pre-Sales Engineering, Senior Manager, Erwin Inc., discussed digital transformation and its impact on today’s chief information officer in his presentation to Argyle’s CIO membership at the 2017 Chief Information Officer Leadership Forum in Los Angeles on April 25. In his presentation, “Digital Transformation and What It Means to the CIO,” Mauro provided insights into how digital transformation is leading organizations – and CIOs – to reinvent themselves.
According to Mauro, organizations and CIOs have many reasons to embrace digital transformation.
In fact, with a digital-first approach, organizations can leverage a wide range of top-notch technologies to foster ongoing business improvements.
“The things that are driving us to transform … are connected devices, the [Internet of Things], the explosion of social media across the globe and the dire need for self-service for access to information,” Mauro stated. “And it’s the big data concepts that span across all of those things.”
Moreover, the push to support customers in today’s always-on, always-connected global marketplace is forcing many organizations to revamp their day-to-day operations and embrace state-of-the-technologies faster than ever before.
“The faster need for information is really driving us to produce new applications on a daily basis,” Mauro said. “This is forcing us to really transform our businesses.”
Data may play a key role in the way that CIOs promote digital transformation.
“Companies are no longer in control of their brand. It’s your customers who define your brand.”
Although many organizations prioritize data collection, few organizations understand how to optimize the value of this information consistently. Fortunately, new technologies are becoming available that promote quick, efficient data analysis.
Data analysis technologies also empower organizations with comprehensive customer insights – something that makes these technologies exceedingly valuable to organizations around the globe.
“It’s the availability of data, it’s the understanding of data and it’s the exploitation of data that is making us transform in new and innovative ways every day,” Mauro noted. “But this poses lots of different challenges.”
How CIOs approach digital transformation may impact an organization’s growth.
If CIOs allocate the necessary time and resources to learn about new technologies and implement these technologies properly, they may be better equipped than others to foster a culture of digital transformation.
On the other hand, if CIOs ignore digital transformation, their respective organizations risk falling behind rivals in a fierce global marketplace.
“The markets are highly competitive … Overnight companies are being born that are completely disrupting markets, and it’s through the exploitation of information and creation of new and innovative ways to interact with clients that is allowing [businesses] to disrupt markets,” Mauro pointed out.
Many organizations are committed to leveraging data analysis tools to enhance their brand reputation, but digital tools have changed the way that brands and consumers connect with one another.
Today, customers dictate an organization’s brand reputation, and CIOs must find ways to collect and analyze customer data to drive meaningful business improvements and transform customer perceptions.
“Companies are no longer in control of their brand. It’s your customers who define your brand,” Mauro stated. “The customers are defining perceptions of your company’s brand. And it’s the companies that take control of the data, understand the data and can really change those perceptions.”
At the same time, CIOs must have protocols and procedures in place to handle the massive amounts of data available to them.
“It’s the availability of data, it’s the understanding of data and it’s the exploitation of data that is making us transform in new and innovative ways every day.”
Customer data comes from a broad assortment of sources, and how CIOs mine this information and obtain actionable insights from it may impact an organization’s immediate and long-lasting success.
“All of our companies are dealing with massive amounts of technical debt,” Mauro indicated. “Along with that, we’re being asked to deal with more and more information, and that growing technical debt will not be able to keep up with the growing amounts of information that we’re being asked to process.”
Ultimately, data is the foundation of the new digital business model, according to Mauro. Companies that have the ability to harness, secure and leverage information effectively may be better equipped than others to promote digital transformation and gain a competitive advantage.
But CIOs must understand that digital transformation is no longer just about technology. Instead, CIOs must analyze an organization’s business applications, content, culture and operations to get the most out of their digital transformation efforts.
Furthermore, Mauro indicated the opportunity for improved digital transformation outcomes lies within enterprise architects, data architects and process architects. These digital transformation experts can help an organization retrieve and assess large collections of data without delay.
As a result, enterprise architects, data architects and process architects can work together to help an organization – regardless of size or industry – transform data into meaningful insights that it can use to improve its everyday operations.
Tony Mauro is a senior manager for Erwin Inc. and an expert in enterprise architecture and systems/software engineering. Tony began his career working for Lockheed Martin Aeronautics and then Northrop Grumman on advanced technology development activities spanning multiple levels of system and software engineering. After a decade in the aeronautics industry, he moved to enterprise architecture and business process modeling company Casewise, where he served as a senior solution architect and pre-sales engineering leader for more than four years, working across numerous industries to help companies implement their transformation strategies. When he’s not helping Erwin customers build data-driven enterprises, he enjoys spending time with his family, traveling and home-remodeling projects.