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Digital Transformation Simply Means Putting Your Customer First


Andy Montgomery – A Cloud UK CTO

Digital Transformation simply means putting your customer first and removing as much friction as possible so that they can consume your product, solution or service.

As part of that journey, some organisations are becoming fatigued by digital transformation, because their expectation is to reach an ‘end state’. However, digital transformation is a continuous process. Our economy, society and technology is constantly evolving and so must your business.

Continuous transformation is the new normal; forget about ‘target state’ and move to a model of continuous optimisation and innovation.

Cloud is a real enabler and accelerator for your continuous transformation, but if you lose sight of your reasons for moving to the cloud, you could just end up with another data centre in the sky and completely miss the opportunity altogether!

Removing undifferentiated heavy lifting, trading capital expense for variable cost, providing agility, flexibility, scalability and the power to change your mind is a real game changer in business.

Your organisation has most likely made a climate pledge and has set carbon reduction goals. 1Did you know that simply by moving from on-premise to AWS cloud, you could reduce your energy usage by nearly 80% and carbon emissions by up to 96%.

Reach your I.T. carbon reduction goals simply by moving to AWS cloud, right sizing your environment and turning resources off when you don’t need them.

Cloud brings huge potential for your business and in this day and age, technology is rarely the blocker; your people, processes and culture are likely to be the main barrier to work on.

If you can’t change the people, consider changing the people.

Change is hard and it requires a gradual change; you need to be fearless and have top-down goals and commitment but it will not happen overnight. Everyone wants to wake up tomorrow and be transformed but it takes practise and you need to work on it like a muscle.

You will need to work to change bad habits and you will need to work to build new habits. And… it’s everyone’s responsibility!

You will require strong and effective leadership at all levels to be successful; those that are on the bus and committed to the journey as well as the destination. Business strategy and technology architecture is a process, not a destination and culture does NOT eat strategy for breakfast if you have a toxic culture. The wrong culture will sacrifice long term gain for short term kudos, which will only benefit the few rather than the many.

Culture does NOT eat strategy for breakfast if you have a toxic culture!

Are you prepared to sacrifice short term gains for long term benefit and are you prepared to be misunderstood for long periods of time? How will you speed up your organisation and increase time to value?

Speed is earned, it is not preordained!

Be customer obsessed and work backwards from their needs. Customers can be end customers, partner organisations and employees and you need to hear their voice to be successful.

Customer obsession is a driving force for innovation and prioritisation.

Best practice, good practice, frameworks, training courses and qualifications will give your people a sense of expertise and direction but don’t forget emotional intelligence, which is often needed to do what is right and do things well for your customers. Be your authentic self, find common sense and have a bias for action! Do not put social cohesion above doing or saying the right thing. Have courage to speak up to the naysayers.

To be successful, rely on your EQ over your IQ.

Humans are the dominant species of our planet; not because of survival of the fittest but because of our ability to adapt to change and to collaborate in groups for better outcomes. The only constant is change and if you continue to do things the way you have always done, sooner or later you will face an existential threat!

A lot of organisations talk about change, but will only act and accelerate when they are at the precipice, only on the edge of extinction but it doesn’t have to be that way. 

If it’s not broken, don’t fix it or “we’ve always done it that way” is a strategy, but that is a ‘keep the lights on’ model, not one of innovation. 

Things always break, so it’s better you break yourself and learn from it than it happens when you least expect it and doing things the way you’ve always done is a comfort blanket but it is also a sign of complacency.

Don’t be complacent. You don’t need to be at the precipice to want to change!

Set your goals, create the right environment and start the process – no matter how small! Whatever change you are looking for in your business – get started!

At Devoteam, we want to help you with your cloud strategy and your journey to the cloud, but this is only the beginning. We truly believe in helping you realise the broader value proposition of cloud, which is why we are passionate about modernising your applications, your operating model, your ways of working and your culture.

Don’t build ‘another’ data centre in the sky and run it with traditional tools and processes. Transform your operating model to leverage the broader cloud value proposition. 

Final thought… when you are considering a technology platform and the delivery partner, how often do you consider the culture of the organisation you’re marrying into? Is this important to you? Or is this purely a procurement decision?

When you’re evaluating the partners you want to work with, remember you’re choosing their culture too!

Empowering you to imagine and realise better change and become a leading digital company.