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Digital-Pillars-for-Digital-Future

Digital Pillars for Digital Future

Covid-19 now and ahead has created a new normal, and we see today both physical and digital co-exists and technologies are transforming our ways of life at a faster pace. Digital transformation is accelerating within enterprises, and consumers today experience the new normal. Education, Health, Public Services, Retail, Media, and Financial Services have leveraged online and mobile channels to stay connected to the consumers and redefined their baseline on the value proposition. We have seen many enterprises struggled during the pandemic and many grew at a breakneck pace, for example, the growth of E-Commerce during the pandemic.

In the new post-pandemic scenario, many enterprises have embarked to accelerate their digital transformation strategy. Innovation is becoming the key mantra for organizations to justify the digital transformation value through new products and services; create new monetization models and initiatives to shore up revenues with new product categories.

Agility and Experience is critical to success

It is no longer about just selling products and services but more about creating a new user experience that forms the centre to the digital transformation.

Many enterprises demonstrated speed to transform and to be swift to augment the product or service offerings; for example, PepsiCo launched two direct-to-consumer websites – PantryShop.com and Snacks.com in less than 30 days. [1]

Similarly, hotels got converted to hospitals; for example, Five Delhi hotels turned into hospitals [2]. Thus, the pandemic created many new models, approaches, ability to augment and transform across the enterprises [3] swiftly. This demonstrated that adaptive organizations, multi-skilled employees, technology centricity, business functions that were agile and flexible were the ones who in the short time changed their business models, products and services and speedily delivered to the changing times thereby captured the new business opportunity and strengthened their brand recall.

For consumers, it was all about User Experience concerning direct to consumer, in-home delivery, services provided by robots and drones, remote support etc., which created a lot of consumer convenience, confidence and support that was required during the pandemic.

Digital Technology is now central to business innovation

Pandemic has taught that organisations that invested and leveraged digital technologies were able to adapt swiftly to a new engagement and commercial model as compared to the ones who believed that the digital journey was a long-drawn process. However, the traditional models will continue for some more years. Enterprises that were slow on adapting digital technologies found it challenging to convert the pandemic crisis to a business opportunity. The pandemic accelerated the digital technologies’ development with innovative solutions needed during the crisis to cater to the needs of the people.

Enterprises should ensure business continuity by leveraging digital technologies, so also providing service quality levels, customer satisfaction, system availability, and above all extreme personalization and intuitive user experience creating a new customer journey to the changing needs.

We will see 4G/5G connectivity providing a backbone and acts as a catalyst in the digital transformation of the enterprises. Also, immersive experience with AR/VR, Smart applications with IoT & AI, Cloud & Edge infrastructure all of them coming together to redefine the business in the new normal. We will see many new powerful devices, wearables, drones, robots and automation in a wide range of business operations enhancing human-machine interactions and intelligence.

4 Digital Pillars to enable digital enterprises

The digital future of an enterprise will have to be addressed with the integration of emerging technologies. It needs to handle four key pillars on which will rest the digital enterprise viz.

  • User Experience – Immersive technologies like AR VR, ultra-high definition videos 4K/8K/360°; Holographic content, Web3.0 are expected to create a new experience.  
  • Connected Intelligence – Smart applications leveraging integrated technologies like IoT, location services, big data analytics, AI/ML, Edge are expected to create real-time insights and extreme personalization.
  • Trust, and Safety – Cybersecurity, Blockchain, Risk and Compliance are expected to provide safety and address issues related to new vulnerabilities, data theft etc., and further adherence to the security and data privacy laws of the country.
  • Robust Connectivity – LTE Advanced, 5G is expected to provide very high speed to handle massive data, ultra-low latency, machine-to-machine communications and reliability with a guarantee to service availability and performance.

The diagram below provides a view on the digital pillars to define the digital future of an enterprise.

All the above are interdependent technologies that will be required to solve a business problem and demonstrate value realization. It requires the enterprise to define their digital strategy with the problem statement and customer journey.

A lot of focus will be required in digital architecture with a focus in microservices, cloud-native applications, also investing in digital engineering in development with a focus in design thinking, agile and DevOps.

India’s Journey

India has shown to the world that during Pandemic, it was quick to adapt to the new normal and dynamic changing times. There were examples of robots leveraged in healthcare; new tools and techniques in education, contact tracing technologies example like Arogya Setu etc. Thus, India and Indian enterprises demonstrated resilience and quick adoption of technology. The way forward, we will see many more problem statements being addressed in various segments especially Smart Cities driven by digital technologies in areas like Agriculture; Healthcare; Education, Disaster Management; for example with Connected Intelligence with edge-based analytics & AI/ML, we should be able to predict disasters well ahead and figure out what actions need to be taken to prevent damages and ensure public safety.

What required now is to invest in upskilling on digital technologies to be future-ready, and this requires government, academia, and enterprises all coming together to create skill development initiatives, research and infrastructure required to accelerate.

Thus, the crisis of Covid-19 in India can provide the necessary change that can bring rich opportunities to accelerate growth with digital pillars for digital future at the core.

References:

  1. https://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Article/2020/05/11/PepsiCo-launches-two-direct-to-consumer-websites-for-snacks-and-beverages-to-meet-demand-for-at-home-eating
  2. https://thewire.in/health/five-delhi-hotels-converted-to-hospitals
  3. https://www.ndtv.com/pune-news/wipro-to-convert-pune-it-facility-into-450-bed-covid-19-hospital-by-may-30-2223829

About the Author

L Ganeshkumar is currently the Consulting Partner & 5G Solution Head, Wipro Ltd. He has 25 years of global IT experience in solution sales, consulting, practice & delivery in industry verticals viz. Communications & Media; Banking & Insurance.