Michael Herman, Principal/Owner of KPMG, emphasized starting digital transformation by trying to solve a business problem.
“How many people here are engaged in some sort of digital transformation at your organization?” asked Herman at the outset of his thought leadership presentation at the 2017 Chief Information Officer Leadership Forum held on June 6 in New York. “How many of you are leading that by solving a business problem versus the process just being labeled ‘digital transformation?’ Less than half. This is a dilemma that many organizations are facing. What is digital transformation? What role does it have in an organization? Is it a pivot for transforming the organization digitally or is it an enabler for getting more intimate with customers and understanding the business better?”
“How many of you are leading by solving a business problem versus the process just being labeled ‘digital transformation?’ Less than half. This is a dilemma that many organizations are facing.”
“I’m going to talk to you about a different paradigm. We’re throwing away terms like CRM, sales-force automation, and marketing automation. These are silos. At the end of the day, it’s around experiences and use cases. You have to think about the business from a lifecycle perspective or you’ll miss your coordination along the way,” stated Herman.
“In our new paradigm, the first thing we have to do is listen. That means understanding your audience and getting to social media. I call social media ‘panning for gold.’ There are great nuggets of information in there, but there’s a lot of junk too. What do we need to supplement this to get good data? We need to talk to people. Digital transformation needs to be embedded in understanding what people want from their experiences—determining the value proposition. This is the blueprint for how digital transformation layers into that to determine how to deliver a better, digitized, localized experience to solve problems,” he said.
“In our new paradigm, the first thing we have to do is listen. That means understanding your audience and getting to social media. I call social media ‘panning for gold.’”
Herman continued, “The critical thing for organizations as they build this and look at their tools is making sure there’s alignment between the expectation and the experience. If you build an experience that far exceeds expectations, that experience comes at a high cost. People in the CIO suite need to work in partnership with the business to understand what’s trying to be achieved around the journey to make sure they build something appropriate in that lifecycle to keep the balance between expectation and experience. The partnership between IT and the business needs to accelerate. Conversely, the worst thing is to have a set of expectations and under-deliver,” he said.
“You have to take the journey of whoever you’re working for and understand what that experience is. You can’t figure this out through a survey or social media. You have to use a collection of different types of data. The critical piece in this is the enterprise data. It needs to flow from understanding those experiences all the way through. If you can’t deliver it and you can’t measure it, how do you know if you’re doing a good job?” asked Herman.
“Everything we do around technology centers on this. It’s all around user-led design. One of the things that often gets dropped when looking at user-led design on these journeys is there are real processes behind this design and the applications. A lot of companies on these journeys aren’t looking at the application layer and the data layer underneath that to see how they talk. You can have a great journey, but if it doesn’t relate to your applications and data infrastructure—well, you have a data warehouse project,” he joked.
“One of the things that often gets dropped when looking at user-led design on these journeys is there are real processes behind the design and the applications.”
“We partner in our technology with almost every large enterprise application that’s out there. For a lot of this work, we’re partnering with Microsoft. I look at Azure as the power cord for organizations to plug in and light up the power for what they need under one hood. From a data and architectural perspective, this is powerful,” stated Herman.
“The predictive nature is critical—taking data and analyzing it and getting insights to go forward. We’re using cognitive as middleware. That’s right, AI as middleware. We feel Microsoft has a great platform and tools for this. It also has excellent data security.”
ABOUT MICHAEL HERMAN:
Michael is a Principal in the Customer Advisory practice focusing on revenue generation and sales effectiveness. Michael has 20+ years of experience in revenue growth strategy formulation, sales effectiveness, and sales transformation delivery to global clients.
Michael leads KPMG’s Sales Transformation and CRM practice in the US and Global Center of Excellence. He has had great success helping organizations improve their ability to generate revenue through the development of integrated and results oriented strategy, process, technology, and people programs.
Michael is responsible for KPMG’s US Microsoft “Sell With” strategy and oversight.
In addition to senior partner roles at other prestigious consulting firms, Michael recently was the SVP Global Market leader for the world’s leading security, intelligence, and investigations organization.
Michael has also worked with many leading organizations on various sales effectiveness and technology issues, including State Farm, Kodak, American Cancer Society, Merrill Lynch, Equinix, National Bank Financial, Apple, Voya, Lexmark, CNA, Microsoft, FCA, Northwestern Mutual, Chase, Adobe, Sun Life, Goldman Sachs, Boston Scientific, Microsoft, Lincoln Financial, Verizon, Athene, Sherwin Williams, Deutsche Bank, Autodesk, HSBC, Sirius XM, Thomson Reuters, Royal Bank of Canada, Qualcomm, Okta, Priceline, Lexmark, J. Crew, Bankers Life & Casualty, BCBS NJ, BCBS NC, Sprint, Penn Mutual, Allianz, CIBC, Johnson & Johnson, Wachovia, AIG, Prudential, HSBC, Charles Schwab, Pfizer, Fidelity, Citibank, and Huntington National Bank.