Gartner: 3 Scale Accelerators to Drive Digital Transformation
November 09, 2017
Share this

CIOs trying to lead digital transformation at the speed needed to succeed need a mix of three scale accelerators, according to Gartner, Inc. The three scale accelerators include: digital dexterity, network effect technologies, and an industrialized digital platform.

During the opening keynote today at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo, Gartner analysts emphasized that scale is not just about size, it occurs up, across and out. Scaling Up allows for gaining efficiencies. Scaling Across quickly takes capabilities learned from one organization into another, while Scaling Out interconnects internal and external platforms and ecosystems.

First Scale Accelerator: Digital Dexterity

Digital dexterity is about a new organizational design and a new talent mix for a new working environment – a high-performing digital workplace. Organizations must change internally to change externally.

"To scale, we need people with digital dexterity. People who are collaborative, agile, analytical, innovative and creative," said Tina Nunno, VP and Gartner Fellow. "People who have both the ability and the desire to exploit existing and emerging technologies for better business outcomes."

A digitally dexterous culture requires three building blocks:

■ Technology

■ Engagement

■ Diversity

"It’s time to build your technology for user experience and double down on experiential skills, such as design thinking, guided navigation, and a/b testing. These all become your go-to tools," said Leigh McMullen, Managing VP at Gartner. "Invest in SaaS applications that make it easy for employees to do for themselves – things like data visualization and application integration. Exploit virtual personal assistants to free everyone from low-value tasks."

The second building block is engagement. "Make people and engagement the design center for your technology and your processes," Nunno said. "For that we can use the science of behavioral change. For example, by using peer advocates, trusted influencers, and social norming, we get closer to creating the right employee experience."

The third element to build a culture of digital dexterity is diversity. CIOs should look at exploiting diversity in all forms, such as diverse data, diverse talents, diverse suppliers, diverse backgrounds, and diverse cultures. "Diversity allows us to overcome all forms of bias to harness the power of the crowd and digital," McMullen said.

Second Scale Accelerator: Network Effect Technologies

Network effect technologies transform the CIO’s work from making tactical technology decisions into building strategic platforms. This unique set of technologies creates virtuous patterns of growth, where waves of disruption build upon each other, exponentially. Three network effect technologies to focus on for 2018 include: the Internet of Things (IoT), application programming interfaces (APIs), and artificial intelligence (AI).

"IoT scales the physical world. IoT allows us to sense, measure and mediate everything from oil pipelines to human veins. It allows us to make better decisions faster," Nunno said. "As the number of connected devices grows, you go from no information to abundant data. The network effect of IoT quickly converts individual objects into systems.

Nunno also explained the type of people to get the job done. She said, "Find people who are able and eager to embed all types of intelligence in IoT. Engage data management professionals to ensure you have diverse source data. Leverage the digital dexterity of citizen data scientists."

While IoT scales the physical world, APIs scale relationships into ecosystems. They enable CIOs to easily connect partners, employees, and even competitors into a vibrant, webscale network that unlocks value for everyone.

"Value emerges slowly, and then it accelerates quickly as more participants are added to the ecosystem and new APIs are discovered and used. That is the network effect," said McMullen.

With IoT scaling the physical world, and APIs scaling relationships, think of AI as scaling people. Gartner believes that AI will help people, not replace them. Certain jobs have been lost in every technology revolution, and new jobs have been created. AI is no different. Gartner analysts said the real potential with AI is the augmentation of people.

"AI’s best use today and well into the future will be to augment human capabilities," Nunno said. "A human machine is smarter than either by themselves. The machine scales the person. The person scales the machine."

Third Scale Accelerator: Industrialize the Digital Platform

The industrialized digital platform unleashes the digital dexterity of your workforce, and it unlocks the potential of network effect technology. To industrialize means using a digital platform to create new digital market places.

"The beauty of the industrialized digital platform is that it enables you to create value in all directions at scale: up, across and out," Nunno said. "Value creation used to be one directional: from the organization to customers. Now value creation can scale in all directions, from anyone, anywhere."

Organizations will need to set their digital ambition by determining what kind of organization they want to be. Without digital business ambition, organizations just have a collection of projects.

Next, CIOs should build on their legacy systems. They should combine their modernized legacy applications and their digital platform for massive integration complexity on a massive scale. They should integrate their platforms internally, as well as with external ecosystem partners. Integrating externally is key because top performing CIOs expect to double the number of important ecosystem partners they have during the next two years.

Share this

The Latest

May 28, 2020

On Wednesday, May 6th, iOS users all over the world experienced an app crash when they tried to open popular apps such as TikTok, GroupMe, Spotify, and Pinterest. How did simultaneous crashes occur across so many independent apps? What's the common thread that would cause widespread app crashes? Turns out, it was a change in behavior in the Facebook API ...

May 27, 2020

Keeping networks operational is critical for businesses to run smoothly. The Ponemon Institute estimates that the average cost of an unplanned network outage is $8,850 per minute, a staggering number. In addition to cost, a network failure has a negative effect on application efficiency and user experience ...

May 26, 2020

Nearly 3,700 people told GitLab about their DevOps journeys. Respondents shared that their roles are changing dramatically, no matter where they sit in the organization. The lines surrounding the traditional definitions of dev, sec, ops and test have blurred, and as we enter the second half of 2020, it is perhaps more important than ever for companies to understand how these roles are evolving ...

May 21, 2020

As cloud computing continues to grow, tech pros say they are increasingly prioritizing areas like hybrid infrastructure management, application performance management (APM), and security management to optimize delivery for the organizations they serve, according to SolarWinds IT Trends Report 2020: The Universal Language of IT ...

May 20, 2020

Businesses see digital experience as a growing priority and a key to their success, with execution requiring a more integrated approach across development, IT and business users, according to Digital Experiences: Where the Industry Stands ...

May 19, 2020

Fully 90% of those who use observability tooling say those tools are important to their team's software development success, including 39% who say observability tools are very important ...

May 18, 2020

As our production application systems continuously increase in complexity, the challenges of understanding, debugging, and improving them keep growing by orders of magnitude. The practice of Observability addresses both the social and the technological challenges of wrangling complexity and working toward achieving production excellence. New research shows how observable systems and practices are changing the APM landscape ...

May 14, 2020
Digital technologies have enveloped our lives like never before. Be it on the personal or professional front, we have become dependent on the accurate functioning of digital devices and the software running them. The performance of the software is critical in running the components and levers of the new digital ecosystem. And to ensure our digital ecosystem delivers the required outcomes, a robust performance testing strategy should be instituted ...
May 13, 2020

The enforced change to working from home (WFH) has had a massive impact on businesses, not just in the way they manage their employees and IT systems. As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, enterprise IT teams are looking to answer key questions such as: Which applications have become more critical for working from home? ...

May 12, 2020

In ancient times — February 2020 — EMA research found that more than 50% of IT leaders surveyed were considering new ITSM platforms in the near future. The future arrived with a bang as IT organizations turbo-pivoted to deliver and support unprecedented levels and types of services to a global workplace suddenly working from home ...