It is no surprise that organisations are increasingly undertaking tech-enabled transformations.
The cloud market is booming. Research from Gartner forecasts that SaaS, the largest segment of the cloud market, will grow by more than 20% in 2022.
Artificial Intelligence and robots are predicted to transform the workplace by 2030, or sooner, making swathes of traditional jobs redundant.
With more and more technological disruption, there is a huge opportunity for organisations to use technology to drive innovation and competitor advantage.
But who should own a tech-enabled transformation programme?
Time and time again we see tech-enabled transformations in businesses being left to the responsibility of IT.
Although this can be a good place to start, particularly in the initial scoping of the technology required, stakeholders and leaders of the change need to be engaged from across the organisation.
Tech-enabled transformation programmes need to be led by the people who are closest to what the changes will mean to their organisation.
They lead to transformation that extends beyond the technology and impacts the organisation as a whole. So, they need to be business led.
A finance programme needs to be owned in finance. A customer service programme has to be led by customer services.
And IT should be an integral part of the project team.
Successful tech-enabled transformations look at what needs to change in the overall operating model, including the processes, people, culture. There must be a clear strategy to guide the programme, investment in technology capability that aligns to business need, good programme governance and constant evolution balanced against the need to finish the programme.
How do organisations ensure effective ownership of a tech-enabled programme?
Here are our recommendations
1. Collaboration is key
In our experience, the most impactful programmes have clear collaboration and governance between the customer of the programme (the business functions who own the changes) and IT.
Turf wars between IT and the business functions most impacted can derail the most carefully planned programme.
2. The end user comes first
The design of the solution and the overarching strategy needs to come from the wider business. The needs of the end user must remain a core focus throughout. The role of IT is to enable the delivery of the technology solution and collaborate with the business to achieve it.
And, as with any project, key performance indicators (KPIs) need to be set up to measure the business value delivered to the organisation.
3. Partnering with vendors
Positively partnering with vendors to implement new technology is commonplace and to be encouraged. The owner of the partnership with the vendor is less important than how the vendor is managed to ensure success. In the case of implementing a new cloud platform for example, it has to be a collaborative effort within the business and with the vendor.
Who is leading the way?
In our work with Avis Budget Group on a number of different projects, the Group demonstrated the value of partnering effectively between HR, Finance and IT in the back office and operations across the world.
One project ensured the smooth transition of roles and responsibilities, and the achievement of €2.5m of monetisable benefits in year one, with 30% projected further benefits. Another resulted in the successful global roll out of Workday, on time and within budget.
This was the business’s first ever successful roll out of a global technology platform. Read the Avis Transformation case study here.