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Digital Transformation & Intelligent Automation

Transformation Network

By pwsadmin | May 15, 2021

The Achilles heel of every transformative business model is their reliance on ever increasing amounts of data that need to be transported quickly across wide area networks and processed at edge computing end points. To meet this expected demand, the global telecommunications industry is rapidly moving toward a future in which networks must have the…

Essential Characteristics of Cloud Computing as Digital Transformation

By pwsadmin | May 15, 2021

Hybrid IT blends traditional datacenters, managed service providers, and cloud service providers to deliver the necessary mix of information technology services. This IT consumption model enables a composable infrastructure which describes a framework whose physical compute, storage, and network fabric resources are treated as services. Resources are logically pooled so that administrators no longer need…

Transformation Innovation

By pwsadmin | May 15, 2021

4 Factors Driving Digital Transformation ROI The critical assessment factors for cloud ROI risk probability are the following:      Infrastructure utilization Speed of migration to cloud Ability to scale business/mission processes Quality delivered by the new cloud-based process  These four factors directly drive digital transformation ROI because they affect revenue, cost, and the time required to…

Transformation Frameworks

By pwsadmin | May 15, 2021

Digital transformation necessitates changes in an organization’s operational processes. According to Harvard, a focus on operations can lead to business process optimization and entirely new revenue streams. Three common routes for this are the following:      Robotic process automation (RPA) which uses artificial intelligence to automate routine activities      Remote worker enablement that uses workspace virtualization and…

Transformation Infrastructure

By pwsadmin | September 26, 2020

Hybrid IT enables a composable infrastructure which describes a framework whose physical compute, storage, and network fabric resources are treated as services. Resources are logically pooled so that administrators need to physically configure hardware to support a specific software application, which describes the function of a composable architecture. This type of transformative infrastructure is foundational…

Essential Characteristics of Cloud Computing as Digital Transformation

By pwsadmin | September 25, 2020

A survey of 2,000 executives conducted by Cognizant in 2016 identified the top five ways digital transformations generate value:      Accelerating speed to market      Strengthening competitive positioning      Boosting revenue growth      Raising employee productivity      Expanding the ability to acquire, engage, and retain customers   Digital transformation is also a cultural change. Cloud Computing as Digital Transformation Since cloud…

Embrace Transformation

By pwsadmin | September 22, 2020

From a business perspective, differentiating business processes and quality customer service are central to overall success. Business leaders must therefore clearly identify and measure how information technology contributes to the value of every key business process. They must also know how to most cost effectively use IT when the task is merely the management of…

Computer Vision Advances Zero-Defect Manufacturing

By pwsadmin | July 25, 2020

by Kevin L. Jackson Electronics manufacturers operate in a challenging environment. It’s hard enough to keep up with the ever-accelerating rate of change in the industry. Now customers want increasingly specialized product variations in less time and of higher quality. Meeting this demand for increased product variation can seriously impact the bottom line. Such variability increases…

Real-Time Analytics Power the Roadway of the Future

By pwsadmin | July 25, 2020

By Kevin L. Jackson The complexities of citywide traffic are pushing the limits of existing transportation management systems. Outdated infrastructure is based on proprietary, single-purpose subsystems, making it costly to acquire, operate, and maintain. And current roadways are simply not prepared for the future of autonomous vehicles. Enter the SPaT Challenge, an initiative encouraging cities and…

Thriving on the Edge: Developing CSP Edge Computing Strategy

By pwsadmin | March 6, 2020

Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are facing significant business model challenges. Referred to generally as edge computing, the possibilities introduced by the blending of 5G networks and distributed cloud computing technologies are redefining how CSPs operate, partner, and drive revenue. A new Ericsson Digital whitepaper entitled, “Edge computing and deployment strategies for communication service providers,” addresses these challenges…


By Kevin Jackson & Dez Blanchfield

Digital Transformation often needs Intelligent Automation. This type of change is the focus of a recent “Pioneers of Possible” podcast.  In discussion with Elli Hurst – Vice President, Global Automation – IBM Global Business Services (GBS), Dez Blanchfield finds out how her life’s journey inspires her in helping IBM clients use Intelligent Automation to enable globally integrated capabilities.

With six years at Price Waterhouse and 24 years at IBM, Elli seems to have moved a long way from her family’s restaurant business. The service industry passion that she learned from her father, however, is still deep in her heart. That care and passion areevident in how she focuses on understanding her client’s desired business outcomes. By using these targeted outcomes as a beacon for every engagement, her team helps clients align and execute on priorities in a manner that delivers a returnon investment in months.

Her being a technology company executive, it is surprising to hear her describe technology as only “table stakes.” While recognizing the critical and fundamental role that technology plays, Ms. Hurst prioritizes the need for process and people elements to work together with the technology.  While automation typically starts with a focus on reducing cost, it moves quickly to the delivery of value. Cost efficiencies exist, but value gained by the speed at which an enterprise can perform a business process with high quality is more important than to cost savings. According to her, attaining these types of business outcomes and values stem from a strategy that addresses:
  • Impact onthe business and to the people that are performing work;
  • How people interact with the technology and automation;
  • How people can help enable automation; and
  • What new skill setsare needed.
The answers to these points are the basis for a successful Digital Workforce Strategy.
Organizations often err by trying to automate what people do.  Ms. Hurst’s insight is in knowing that automation should be designed to assist people in what they do which represents the real secret to bringing automation forward into the enterprise. Automation always impacts a workforce and jobs always change. Business value is released, however, when this change frees up innovation and unveils more exciting projects and tasks for that workforce.



The impact of automation on the workforce is not a bad thing; it is a good thing. Elli recommends “Taking it to the Positive” by getting buy-in and engaging the workforce teams impacted by automation. Experience has taught her that while point solutions may deliver 40% increases in efficiency, used in tandem with a Digital Workforce Strategy, they can simultaneously deliver a 95% increase in employee satisfaction. Establishing and executing that strategy is the key to any transformation that uses automation.

Another one of her telling observations is that automation drives the most significant disruptions to back-office repetitive tasks. By looking at the end-to-end business model through an industry lens, her teams have helped clients to impact the external world beyond the back office and through to the client’s customers. Described as enabling digital experience “concentric circles,” this process enables enrichment of a client’s entire business ecosystem.

The automation conversations usually start in a specific area, like robotic process automation, which has been spurred by a back-office disruption. Addressing any disruption like this requires a strategy because global automation is a journey that aligns business process with rapidly changing technology. The organizational strategy must be able to flex and continuously adapt its strategy. The typical 3-5 year strategy is no longer viable. Intelligent automation demands a “fail fast” strategic approach.

Ms. Hurst ended this fascinating conversation by describing the future of automation as the convergence of all technologies at the enterprise level. In her view, the enablement of self-healing, lights-out, information technology platforms will give business executives the ability to couple an integrated view of all business processes with an ability to take immediate and effective action through mobile devices.

This post was brought to you by IBM Global Technology Services. For more content like this, visit IT Biz Advisor.

Cloud Musings

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