Cloud platforms let enterprises fast-track digital transformation

Cloud platforms let enterprises fast-track digital transformation. As the move to cloud and hybrid cloud environments continues to accelerate, there’s more urgency than ever before for C-suites to optimise their organisations. The rapid evolution of technology both necessitates and enables the move to leaner, smarter and more effective business processes.

Digital transformation is neither a moment nor a destination and enterprises realise that in order to successfully transform their organisations, they need to work with expert partners that can understand their businesses and pave the best pathways for their journeys.

Enterprises that comprise 2000 to 5000 office users, as well as those comprising upwards of 10 000 users, often find themselves in a unique situation where they are, for lack of a better description, stuck with legacy platforms. These organisations are mature, with complex, integrated systems and many of them have grown out of mergers and acquisitions of multiple businesses. It’s not unusual to find a situation where the business uses a combination of Oracle, SAP and Microsoft, for example, to manage various processes.

This becomes big, heavy and slow, and so enterprise C-suites are actively seeking to optimise their organisations by moving to simpler, cloud-based platforms. As mentioned already, this is both necessitated and enabled by technology. This is why a platform like Microsoft Dynamics 365 (D365) is enjoying such interest and uptake – it is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform that forms part of a far larger and integrated cloud ecosystem that belongs to the same family.

An ERP platform manages the support functions that, in essence, allow a business to be a business. HR, finance and procurement are the three core functions of every organisation, irrespective of industry. Every business must employ people and pay them, must buy things (or have input costs) and charge customers money for products or services. From a finance, HR and procurement perspective, the larger the organisation becomes, such as those with thousands of enterprise users, the more challenging HR, finance and procurement becomes.

Something like D365 is more than just another ERP platform. Buying into an ecosystem enables rapid business transformation through the integration of additional capabilities such as the blockchain, artificial intelligence, containerisation, and much more. This is significantly faster and more efficient than trying to stitch different vendor solutions together and trying to force them to work in harmony.

However, the answer to true optimisation and efficiency doesn’t lie in merely renewing an existing platform licence or purchasing another. It lies in a methodical analysis of the enterprise and its needs and nuances. Altron Karabina appreciates that mature and larger environments are fairly mature and significantly more complex, which is why we have invested in a digital platform transformation team that comprises the level of experience and expertise to manage complex transformation planning.

It’s crucial for a digital transformation team to join the conversation in the very early stages to ensure the enterprise analysis, product suitability tests and solutions that are crafted are not only done within an acceptable budget but also to ensure board-level approval. This often takes place over multiple years and in successive deployments. The key is ensuring executive alignment from day one.

A partner team like this must work closely with key stakeholders and help them build the business case and costing model to mitigate risks and common pitfalls in complex deployments. Complex projects are often far more than a platform upgrade or move to a new-generation ERP platform such as D365. Often, these projects require changes to the entire IT landscape which can impact decisions around integration, business intelligence, data management strategies and governance.

Certainly from our perspective, the institutional experience gained over numerous projects and deployments enables the digital transformation team to put together a catalogue of reusable IP and best practices that new customers can benefit from, without the pain of trial and error.

Legacy systems have served an important role in a business’s journey to where it is today. However, important decisions from 10 or 15 years ago should not mean that the modern enterprise is hamstrung into stagnating. Cloud-based solutions enable enterprises with many thousands of users to enjoy the types of optimisation that, until fairly recently, were the preserve of smaller organisations.

This article “Cloud platforms let enterprises fast-track digital transformation” was published on IT – ONLINE on the 29th June 2022.

Reach out to Heath Turner  if you want to learn more about Altron Karabina’s approach to Digital Transformation.  Heath has been with Altron Karabina, and formerly Karabina and isPartners for over 18 years and was a former director of Karabina. Heath’s role today is to lead a new team focused on Digital Platforms Transformation, and more importantly to help customers take those big and bold steps towards transforming their business with technology at a pace that makes sense and also that delivers returns.

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