Unbundling the world will remain the dominant theme as we enter 2023 – and probably until the end of the decade. Globalisation is in reverse powered by increasing nationalism and inflation coupled with supply chain upheaval, which will require a revised operational approach. Adapting existing systems is not easy, nor is it easy to replace legacy systems which are expensive and cumbersome to redesign.
The systems of yesterday are not fit for purpose. Digital transformation requires leadership, and we are seeing the emergence of new business models who realise the value of digital transformation and data as a gateway to opportunity, not just survival. In the era of rising costs from energy to food, driven by sanctions and scarcity, strategies to save costs are at a premium. I believe that further acceleration of digitalization can be an antidote to persistent price inflation. Regrettably, this may breathe some room into the tight labour market as roles are replaced with systems: not a bad thing for relieving wage price inflation.
The resilient enterprises will collect, manage and move data at a level never seen.
“Data is the new oil.” New technologies such as IoT (Internet of Things), ML (Machine Learning) and AI (Artificial Intelligence) are shaping companies of the future and building the fourth industrial revolution. Technology innovation is unlocking and enabling new operating models while also creating new revenue sources – but only if the data can be relied upon and trusted.
So which technology forms the building block for others? Enter Blockchain.
Blockchain technology offers transparency and creates the operational agility required in the new normal. For companies, blockchain can be used as a private permissioned framework for a group of stakeholders, such as suppliers, customers and regulators, to manage the sourcing, production and movement of goods dynamically throughout the supply chain. Unlike public blockchain networks, private ones could be more efficient than current legacy systems when you consider the amount of processing, time and money spent checking the data.
The data, once collected for each product, each workflow and each process can be used to support ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) and sustainability claims whose compliance will dominate company Board agendas through the decade.
ESG is not a checklist but a requirement requiring a re-engineering of operational processes and data collection. The world of business is changing, and regulators, consumers and investors expect more information about everything. Leaders and forward-thinking companies recognise ESG excellence as a competitive advantage more than just a survival threshold.
~ BTE SPECIAL PROMOTION~
Some US$ 2 trillion has flowed into ESG themed assets which demonstrates the investor commitment to the cause. All companies need access to capital and, as this pool grows, it won’t be long before ESG becomes a reporting line in financial statements. Using blockchain to verify ESG metrics will ultimately lead to a fairer, more resilient and robust corporate model for the future.
The enterprise of the new decade will be a tech business at its core, leading with a technology driven problem solving approach. This requires a new skillset and a new mindset to convert the challenges to opportunities.
And what advice can you give to business leaders as they consider incorporating new technologies into their business?
The role of the CIO will be of fundamental importance. But what is a CIO?
Long gone are the days of your IT manager reporting to the Finance Director or CFO when IT maintenance was a cost item rather than a strategic imperative. A positive step forward is the appointment a CIO or even a digital transformation officer and a stepping stone to a Board position. There in lies the quandary, who should make room for the CIO at the Board or do you add another permanent seat?
The answer hangs on the importance applied to digital transformation and building the organisation of the future.
A CIO is now required to wear multiple hats crossing from short term business needs to the long term vision of a strategic rebuild and investment; akin to a first aider to a surgeon. However, many CIO’s or digital transformation officers have not yet made the mindset shift to the latter or are hindered by short term performance objectives.
With the rise of the cloud and SaaS business models, enterprises can move to digital infrastructure lite which means that the upfront cost of implementing a new digital application is a fraction of what it used to be. In fact, pay-as-you-go models mean benefit today without associated upfront costs.
This enables rapid adoption of the most cutting-edge applications for business processes. This trend is likely to accelerate as we see more enterprise grade software priced to fit onto a mid-level manager’s credit card budget.
The modern CIO needs to be able to reimagine the enterprise through a technology stack integrated into each business operation and drive forward innovation through a technology lens. The adoption of new technology with the new cloud-based delivery and SaaS business models, allows rapid deployment and testing at minimal costs (time and money).
In those enterprise ecosystems there’s another software innovation that has been gaining traction over the past few years, No-code and Low-code platforms. These are software platforms that simplify digital transformation by enabling the development and deployment of digital products with minimum efforts and resources. More specifically, low-code reduces programming efforts to a minimum, while no-code empowers anyone to create apps without any programming knowledge. The key driver for their growth is the ever-growing demand for digital solutions and the shortage of skilled developers to produce them. Skill shortages are even more dire when it comes to blockchain.
Enter Low-code / No-code platforms. These enable non software geeks to build applications using wizards and drag and drop interfaces which then translate their actions into code. Imagine, your employees being the best source of coding talent? This could result is huge productivity gains while simultaneously reducing costs spent on expensive developers and place tech driven problem solving at the hear of the enterprise.
Finally, the CIO / Digital Transformation Officer should be elevated to a Board level at least with a regular reporting slot if not a permanent seat. Finally, capital providers should place the Digital officer at their regular meeting schedules to reinforce the broad importance of the role.
By Nish Kotecha, co-founder and Chairman, Finboot
About the author
Co-founder of Finboot – a technology company that gives its world class customers a competitive edge through accelerating their digital transformation, realising value and building trust through blockchain. Finboot has developed MARCO, an ecosystem which brings together blockchain technologies in one place, connecting multiple ledgers simultaneously. It enables companies to incorporate blockchain within their value and supply chains, bring traceability, transparency and compliance which, in turn, helps them meet sustainability and ESG requirements while also increasing operational efficiency. Finboot is headquartered in the UK with a base in Spain.
Finboot is a technology company that gives its world class customers a competitive edge through accelerating their digital transformation, realising value and building trust through blockchain.
Finboot has developed MARCO, a ‘low-code’ platform that simplifies digital transformation by enabling companies to develop and deploy digital solutions with minimum efforts and resources. This ‘low-code’ platform accelerates the ‘time to value’ – the time it takes to a deliver an application to market.
- MARCO brings together blockchain technologies in one place, connecting multiple ledgers simultaneously
- It also powers ‘no-code’ applications which helps businesses realise value
- It enables companies to incorporate blockchain within their value and supply chains, which increases traceability, transparency and compliance which, in turn, helps them meet sustainability and ESG requirements while also increasing operational efficiency
Finboot is headquartered in the UK with a base in Spain.
~ BTE SPECIAL PROMOTION ~