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I’m sure you’ve read my previous Tuesday Thoughts, where I listed top five CXO blogs and underscored why you must take the time to go through them, and figure out business transformation with SAP.

If you did go through them, you may have noticed the common thread running through those blogs was business transformation.

At this point, you might be asking yourself this question: “If transforming business through new technology adoption is the need of the hour, why aren’t ALL the companies going for it? After all, it’s a sure-fire way to make your business intelligent and future-ready, right?”

That’s absolutely right. But first, let’s understand why you need to adopt new digital technologies in order to transform your business digitally.

Simply put, the why is self-explanatory – there is no other way out!

Come 2020, every business will operate like a software company. Here’s what I mean by this: High-end automation is going to be a top technology spend for those companies in tune with the times and the current technological evolution. This is a good trend because of three primary reasons:

1) Digital Transformation steers process automation, which in turn empowers employees.

2) Digital Transformation helps companies anticipate and proactively respond to customer needs.

3) Digital Transformation facilitates new business models and creates new revenue streams.

So what can you expect in 2020 with business transformation with SAP? Here are my thoughts:

  • Customer-centricity: Customers are placed at the center of everything CXOs do. Hyper-connectivity and hyper- customer-centricity become the norm.
  • Data drives differentiation: Real-time data insights become a key differentiator. Companies become nimble enough to embed external data into transactional processes for informed decision-making and creating engaging experiences.
  • Digitalized processes: A fundamental element of the intelligent enterprise is digitalization. Whether it’s creating a first-class mobile user experience; building processes with real-time insights or cognitive thinking, digitalization is where it all begins.
  • Cloud-first: Most organizations are eyeing the cloud for their technology infrastructure, and this trend is accelerated by platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions.

Let’s talk about new technology adoption in the context of ERP-platform migration readiness.

I tend to separate organizations into four groups when it comes to migrating their present systems of record to next-generation ERP:

  1. Companies with no plans to migrate: They may be forced to make a move when their service provider stops supporting their existing ERP/software, but they sense no urgency about planning for that eventuality. The risk is when push comes to shove, they may not be able to react as swiftly as they’d like to!
  2. Companies with no business case to migrate: They may have overheard some general discussion about the benefits of digital (ERP) transformation, but they lack a concrete use-case to justify the move.
  3. Companies with no roadmap to migrate: They typically understand the benefits of migration and may even have a solid business requirement for starting but are unsure where to begin.
  4. Companies that identify ERP-platform migration as a part of their overall digital transformation strategy: As market leaders, they understand that transforming their ERP platform is really a sub-set of their digital reinvention program, and plan accordingly.

Undeniably, a growing number of companies today are in the third and fourth groups. They recognize the role of ERP-driven digital transformation in harnessing the broader benefits of advanced technologies like Blockchain, IoT and RPA.

Market leaders are less concerned with why they should be making the move, as opposed to how quickly they can make it.

This begs the question – just how quickly can your business unlock the full potential of digital transformation through intelligent ERP platforms, like SAP S/4HANA?

If you can’t come up with an answer or are unsure of where you stand, write to me with your questions. I’ll be happy to address them.

By: Venkat Nanduri

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