Category Archives: Technology

Being Disruptive

Layton Christensen (2015, p.150) who is being broadly viewed as world’s principal management guru of recent times, had portrayed disruption as a diagram with both vertical and horizontal axes, with every industry having a unique metric on the vertical axis. For instance, in the airline industry, the vertical axis represents routes’ length that would ultimately measure their success. And for any airline company, they would prefer longer routes than shorter ones which is obviously due to profitability reasons. Consequently, giant airliners do focus on their business modeling, promotions and marketing campaigns on the long destinations, that has led new entrants like Ryan Air in Europe and Southwest in the United States to seize the opportunity and disrupt the area that was neglected by industry leaders, which is exactly the way that disruption basically happens.

While in the Information Technology sector, then Christensen highlighted that the vertical axis in their case is the magnitude of engagement, along with the growth potential with involved clients, where usually large IT firms focus more on big accounts and clients due to the same profitability reason mentioned in the earlier example. Consequently, the room will be opened for smaller IT players to grasp the market with less attention, and try to do the disruption there.

Reference:

Christensen, C. (2015), ‘Disruptive Innovation is a Strategy, Not Just the Technology’, Business Today, 23, 26, pp. 150-158, Business Source Complete, EBSCOhost. Available online from: https://goo.gl/7aFBnI.

Digital Transformation and Change Management Practices in Qatari Organizations

I have developed this research to primarily look at identifying and assessing the incorporated challenges as part of the digital transformation and change management practices in Qatari organizations. The outcomes of this research intend to supply the necessary techniques to smooth the journey of change management from the inception stage all the way through execution, completion, and acceptance by the users and business. Furthermore, this research seeks to shed light on a set of influential methods that would help in ensuring a solid transition during and after the digital transformation journey of implementation and operation, with the minimum volume of hiccups and unforeseen risks.

Additionally, this work highlights the urgency of following one of the most nowadays business necessities, which without it, present firms might end up facing a significant struggle to survive and adapt to the new influencing factors of the modern business. Thus, this research covers the benefits of the inclusive digital shift, but without ignoring the extent of necessary conditions, starting with the comprehensive digital strategy, all the way down to the adopted change and project management frameworks, along with the imperative procedures to ensure effective rollout and successful business adoption.

As part of the key findings of this study, business leaders and IT executives must realize the criticality of setting rational and right perceptions for both the leadership as well as employees. Business leaders must evaluate some influential dynamics carefully to observe in which manner their companies can closely align them with the overall digital transformation process. Those dynamics must consider four dimensions: competition, corporate, customer and leadership.

Moreover, IT executives are supposed to utilize their role for the benefit of the business, therefore adding value. They must eagerly try to highlight the set of opportunities and challenges in an engaging manner that can release positive energy. Nevertheless, the corporate culture has a substantial role in discovering the appropriate balance, and IT executives should generally outline their leadership profile for the sake to make the most out of their influence whether it is boosting innovation, leveraging interdependence or even leading from behind, to align it with the executive team (Bongiorno et al. 2017).

Change Management

Change must be effectively articulated, passionately owned, and persistently driven to completion (Tichy & Charan, 1989). Employees must be part of the change, know exactly where the company is heading, why it is going there and what is in it for them once they get to the final stop.

People usually hate the change. Thus they shall be encouraged and enlightened about the overall journey the company is willing to take (JWMI, 2015). Change management is the course that helps employees embrace new practices of doing business, and it is certainly not an easy path.

References:

JWMI (2015) What is the role of a leader? [Online]. Jack Welch Management Institute. Available at: https://goo.gl/BNanBL.

Tichy, N. & Charan, R. (1989) Speed, Simplicity, Self-Confidence: An Interview with Jack Welch [Online]. Harvard Business Review. Available at: https://goo.gl/5OCc24.

Business Digitization

Business digitization is not just the concern of the IT executives; it is strategically significant and serious to business leadership that should take a strong stand through adjacently running both the operations and technology. Considering this, once things are concerned with digitizing business processes, company’s leadership is generally accountable for managing and controlling the transformation.

As a result, digital transformation is becoming more of a management concern, which where it should be. Digital transformation at the same time shall consider agility and speed as fundamental factors whenever business processes are being evaluated and re-engineered. Business operations and processes are supposed to be transformed radically and operate faster, become more secure, and more resilient (Hottges, 2017).

References:

Hottges, T. (2017) ‘Digital Transformation Is a Management Issue’, Abolhassan, F. (ed.) The Drivers of Digital Transformation. Switzerland: Springer, p. 8. (Accessed: 8 November 2018).

When the ERP implementation strikes you hard!

Well the story goes like this, with top managers at Levi Strauss decided to revamp their information technology systems. So the executives decided to migrate to a single SAP system and hired a team of Deloitte consultants to lead the effort. The risks seemed small, and the proposed budget was less than $5 million. But very quickly all hell broke loose. One major customer, Walmart, required that the system interface with its supply chain management system, creating additional hurdles. Insufficient procedures for financial reporting and internal controls nearly forced Levi Strauss to restate quarterly and annual results. During the switchover, it was unable to fill orders and had to close its three U.S. distribution centers for a week. In the second quarter of 2008, the company took a $192.5 million charge against earnings to compensate for the botched project—and its chief information officer, David Bergen, was forced to resign (Source: HBR).

 

The lesson learned here: There is no such thing as an easy ERP rollout. It was and always will be a journey of discomfort and sacrifice, but with a remarkable experience and joy the moment it starts effectively running your business.

 

References:
Flyvbjerg, B., and Budzier, A., (2011), ‘Why Your IT Project May Be Riskier Than You Think‘. Harvard Business Review. Available online from: https://hbr.org/2011/09/why-your-it-project-may-be-riskier-than-you-think.

 

SharePoint is falling behind sharply in the WCM domain

After being leaders back in 2009/2010, It is quite disappointing to see SharePoint falling behind sharply in the WCM domain.

However I don’t believe that was out of coincidence, but on contrary and pragmatically speaking, I would say that was due , but not limited to, the following:

  1. Any dedicated, focused WCM effort is disappearing as Microsoft pushes customers toward the cloud and Office 365. WCM’s greatest urgency and innovation lies in external, customer-facing scenarios, but Microsoft is focusing almost exclusively on business-to-employee scenarios.
  2. Customers wanting to use Microsoft for differentiated customer-facing Web and digital initiatives face the prospect of heavy customization. This has consistently been troublesome when working with SharePoint and will be more so in a cloud-based system.
  3. Feedback from the market suggests usability issues with SharePoint at a time when business is seeking an ever higher level of agility from WCM products. Other vendors in this Magic Quadrant provide far greater agility to marketers than Microsoft provides with SharePoint.
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