I recently attended CEBIT in Hanover, Germany, where the theme of this year’s conference was – wait for it – digital transformation. It seems like everything in IT has to do with digital transformation these days, but the truth of the matter is, companies are still struggling to make their digital dreams a reality.
During one presentation, How Neobanks, Start-Ups, Digital and Mobile Tech Are Redefining Banking and Finance, panelists discussed the pressures of digital transformation on banks while shedding light on some very real and persistent challenges:
“Banks and other traditional financial institutions have steadily integrated more and more technology into their products and services. But the technology that was meant to improve self-service capabilities, shorten waiting times and enhance customer service has also caused a disconnect.”
This disconnect between business drivers and technology capabilities can become a huge barrier to digital transformation progress.
In fact, that was the theme of my own presentation at CEBIT: Software Intelligence for Cloud Migration. For most, shifting to cloud environments is an integral part of modernization plans, but without a sufficient understanding of software systems and the way the function, security and operational risks may come up unexpectedly once migration effort begins.
The vast majority of cloud migration projects fail due to a lack of awareness of software risk and critical violations within application source code. As shared in my presentation, establishing a comprehensive, fact-based and systematic evaluation of your application landscape is a critical first step to digitally transform.
One thing we typically do with our own clients is run an application portfolio assessment at the outset of modernization projects to determine whether applications are suitable for IaaS, PaaS or SaaS environments. An additional benefit of this analysis is a clear benchmark of applications that are the most core to business operations, so teams can easily identify apps to be de-commissioned.
The mantra I advise all our clients to practice is: Start small. Understand your portfolio. Define a process. Refine. Streamline. Repeat.