What technologies are at the root of the digital transformation of the Italian economy? We asked Pierre Gousset, Vice President Emea of Workday, who spoke to us about a transformation that concerns not only companies, but also the Public Administration, which has begun to integrate its internal processes with digital technologies.

Gousset notes that Italy is the second largest producer after Germany within the 28 EU Member States. It is not surprising, therefore, that it is one of the leaders in the industrial robotics or M2M communications sector and that the use of the Internet of things is growing rapidly in Italy, with an industry that in three years has more than doubled.

But above all, for Gousset, Italy is advancing promisingly in the cloud, a technology crucial for digital innovation.

© The cloud © tells us Gousset © has become an indispensable technology for every enterprise It is no longer a place to buy servers or low-cost storage. It is the basis on which companies must be able to respond quickly to changes or to innovate on a large scale. Almost 60% of North American companies now rely on public cloud platforms to manage their operations or implement new information management solutions, such as large data management and cognitive analysis; predictive models; artificial intelligence and machine learning tools This is five times as much as five years ago. Italy is not yet there, with only 22% of Italian companies today using cloud technologies. But we think that spending on the corporate cloud will increase with the take-off of the modernisation of core business applications.

Why? Because one of the main factors that currently hinder digital transformation initiatives of companies is the cocktail of constraints imposed by legacy IT infrastructures. For example, legacy generation software and hardware, such as on-premise ERPs, are not easily compatible with a modern and multi-tenant cloud-based environment.

The aim of the management team, according to Gousset, is therefore to overcome these obstacles and build an organization that can understand what happens on the market and respond effectively with new digital products and services. They know that this transformation will not be a single wave, but many.

They are therefore looking for an alternative that provides them with long-term agility compared to short-term operational efficiency. For example, they want the ability to reconfigure their operating model, processes or implement new business models as they grow. They also want to be able to innovate on scale and test robotization, machine learning or blockchain capabilities on their main processes.

And I mean real, native, public cloud.

In this respect, how do we build skills to put them into action and manage them?

Many organisations are discovering that an increasing share of their revenue is directly linked to areas of digital skills that did not exist 10 years ago. Take today’s emerging occupations, such as data scientist, experienced designer user, and algorithm trainer. Skill requirements will continue to change as companies will have to adapt to exploit new technologies and cross-cutting skills, such as tackling constant change, are becoming increasingly important.

Companies must strive to create a workforce for the future, encouraging employees to grow by learning new skills. Most of the respondents in our recent survey are taking a practical approach to upgrading skills. Most organisations interviewed (52%) plan to improve skills by more than half of their workforce to adapt to changes in the working environment. In Italy, competence in the use of new tools and technologies (39%) and cognitive agility to cope with continuous changes (33%) are the skills perceived as the most important for the Italian workforce in the coming years.

As we start making more and more use of digital technologies throughout the business, the demand for cutting-edge digital skills is increasing. It is in competition with technology companies and with native digital companies for emerging technological skills. And the skill challenge is not just about difficult skills. Soft skills are fundamental for an individual who thrives in this new style of agile organization.

The Data driver planning related to this challenge and then the execution on the development and acquisition of agile digital skills sets is often evaluated by the CEO as the single greatest risk in its digital transformation: how can I be sure that I have the right approach to talent

But the problem of skills is data. Most companies do not know their skills. You can find 50 or 60 different ways to describe the same skill within the same company. I have spoken with companies that have more than 100 people who are involved in their own catalogue of skills and skills models, who spend time maintaining their skills and catalogues… And they usually do so only for certain parts of the organization, or for certain jobs. Just because it is not possible to maintain skills manually, or to ensure that people enter and maintain data in their HR system.

In Workday we decided to face this challenge by providing a universal language of skills, which is managed by itself and is always up to date. We have built algorithms that can process the data of our customers’ skills (the ones that volunteered), private and public data sets, and we have found ourselves with 55,000 unique skills. We call it Workday Skills Cloud, a skill ontology that is much more than a catalogue of skills. This ontology means that we are able to measure the strength of the relationship between skills, but also between skills and other objects such as work, opportunities, learning activities.

This new approach to skills is the basis we provide to help companies bridge the skills gap and adopt a data-based approach to skills planning and management. Today, companies work in agile and networked teams and employees want to find new roles, projects and assignments to grow. The old talent model of inheritance management is disappearing, as companies are looking for qualified people to work on new projects and programs in almost real time.

So, Workday Skills Cloud is not just the vehicle we use to extract skills and keep up to date skills using advanced ML capabilities. It is the basis of an internal market for talent and a career hub for organisations to acquire, manage and develop skills. Let the managers and the leading teams look at the people within the company, find the experts they need and recruit them to work on exciting things. And let people find the opportunities best suited to their wishes and priorities in their organization, based on their ML-based expertise and recommendations and powered by Workday Skills Cloud.

How can Italian companies transform technological investment into value?

Let’s go back 3 years: most digital programs were focused on digital business optimization. Digital technologies have been used to improve the market, sell and support traditional products and services or improve the efficiency of the organisation.

Now the real digital transformation programs are focused on creating new digital products and services, often with new business models, and always with the intention of driving new digital revenue flows for the business.

The creation of these new digital products and services requires organisations to be good at innovation. They must be able to perceive an opportunity on the market and respond quickly and effectively with new ideas for value creation. To turn a potentially disruptive threat into a growth opportunity.

This is a great change for most established companies, where many are stuck in their digital transformation path. The first stages often involve the creation of an innovation laboratory, a new business unit or the acquisition of small innovative disruptors. But that’s the easy part. The difficulty comes when you try to do it on a large scale, moving the way the whole organization works, not only by innovative on the margins of your organization. IDC calls it the digital stand. And this digital stalemate is the point where many CxO and companies are stuck today.

What do digital leaders do that other companies don’t? How do they turn their technological investments into values? Our survey, which includes 998 executives, shows that the most advanced and successful organizations … which we call leaders… were, in our opinion, able to use technology to unlock organizational agility: what

There are five best practices on the subject.

Continuous planning: They plan continuously and in real time, which gives them the speed, agility and dynamism they need to innovate successfully. Plans are active and continuously updated to reflect the changes in progress. Planning must be quick and frictionless, allowing a constant comparison with results and thus shaping the different options to move towards a new opportunity.

Fluid processes and structures: Organisational structures and business support processes must be able to evolve to align with the opportunity, ensuring that resources are where they will be most effective and organised in the right way. This means increasingly switching from traditional hierarchical structures to smoother, more transversal, functional and agile teams. But also investing in modern cloud-based applications that support this agility while reducing the dependence on the IT sector.

Building the workforce of the future: leading organisations are focused on talent as well as strategy and finance. They ensure that their attention to talent is intertwined with the fabric of the entire company. The answer to this is to build an internal market for talents

Responsibility for all employees. In 80% of the leading organisations, all employees have access to timely and relevant data and are allowed to make appropriate decisions. These agile teams must be able to make decisions that are appropriate for the market. If decision-making requires more levels of hierarchical approval, it slows down progress in the itineration and learning of every opportunity. Leadership can also benefit from feedback and concrete data from the front lines that inform strategic decision-making.

Measurement and guidance. If you have successfully faced the above four areas, you have made a long way towards building an agile organization. But agility cannot be equivalent to uncontrolled chaos. The sum of all these innovations must generate a predictable aggregate financial result. You must be able to manage the risk in this portfolio of innovations and ensure compliance throughout the organisation. Leading companies are those that have made significant progress in developing tools and metrics to measure the performance of digital innovations. This gives them that ‘fail fast’ mentality: 94% say they can change course quickly compared to unsuccessful projects.

Taken as a whole, these five areas are crucial ways to rethink your information system and invest in technology. These will remove structural barriers and free people within the company to drive innovation.

What is the significance of the management of technological transformation in companies, namely the system integrator?

Over time, digital transformation has acquired maturity. The concept of digital transformation has gradually evolved from a futuristic vision strongly promoted based on technology (e.g. Big Data, artificial intelligence) to a more realistic and attainable one.

One thing that is common in the implementation of digital transformation projects is the need for data , I mean good quality data. This represents for many organizations the first and biggest challenge. And often it requires a rethink of their information system, but also a rethink of the roles and processes existing within the organizations.

New generation software and business applications like Workday are also an accelerator of this transformation, allowing people to access rich and real-time data and organizations to be much more agile with continuous access to innovations.

In the old On-Premise world, the System integrators and IT departments were mainly IT service providers that had strong expertise in integrating applications and infrastructures. Their methodologies were largely focused on the management of multi-annual transformation projects, from initial implementation to long-term maintenance of the system. This model will be dismantled in the digital era.

The main digital transformation projects require a different mentality, we must learn the old world. New generation leaders and system integrators bring a solid intelligence of the market to guide agility, customer centrality and formulate a digital transformation strategy defined by data. They bring industry expertise around new technologies to help their customers (indoor or outdoor) transform their business. They understand the importance of balancing long-term agility and continuous innovation with short-term efficiency. This helps customers better align their business professionals with the results. And they turn their roles from IT service providers to strategic business partners.

What role does the system integrator play in the digital transformation of small and medium-sized enterprises, often without specific expertise in information technology?

Beyond the diffusion of technology, system integrators can play an emerging role as consultants in the early stages of the development of the digital transformation plan. They can integrate interfunctional teams with cost estimates and technological options. They can also help organizations determine their readiness and guide them in developing their plans before implementing technology. Finally, their role during and after the implementation project remains absolutely fundamental, and goes far beyond the role of an IT service provider. Not only do SMEs expect their system integrator to understand their business and help them develop their plans, but they want them to play the role of consultants and transforming catalysts throughout the project, taking into account the end and being an extended part of their organisation

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You May Also Like