1. You can’t do digital transformation without it.
We’ve all heard about digital transformation - in fact, many of us have heard so much about it for so long, that we’re pretty much sick of it. Digital transformation is a great idea - much like the idea of me becoming a millionaire - but the likelihood of both is that they’re somewhat distanced from reality.
The good news is that the steps required to realize the benefits of digital transformation are a lot easier to achieve than the steps needed for you or I to become millionaires.The first step is to start modernizing how you manage information.
According to AIIM, “Every organization is on—or should be on—a Digital Transformation journey”, and indeed 81% of organizations feel that digital transformation is important (or very important). But moving from that sense of importance to an actual plan can be difficult.
However, one thing is key—if you want to enable digital transformation within any business, the
information infrastructure needs to be solid, digital, and modern.
The reason for this is simple. If you don’t have a solid foundation under which to manage the underlying information within your business, how can you possibly look to digitize the processes that sit on top of it? If you cannot quickly find data or content within the enterprise, then how do you expect to leverage analytics or AI? And if there’s no consistent structure to your metadata (or your the way in which your organization describes its content and data), then compliance and information governance within your environment becomes increasingly cumbersome, painful, time-consuming and, flawed.
The key is to modernize the toolkit and infrastructure that manages that information in order to provide a solid, extensible foundation for delivering digital transformation on top of it. Without this, digital transformation simply cannot happen.
2. You can’t deliver engaging customer experiences without it.
Digital Banking Reports’ 2017 Retail Banking Trends and Predictions survey found that the number one trend (and top strategic priority) among global banking leaders was improving the customer journey and providing a positive customer experience. But it’s clear that most financial institutions are not currently meeting these customers’ expectations, at least not yet: only 37% of organizations have a formal CX plan, according to the Improving the Customer Experience in Banking report.
This sounds very similar to the digital transformation conundrum explained earlier - and for obvious reasons. To deliver even a basic customer experience, you need consistent customer information that can be provided across all of the touchpoints of the business. However, this simple requirement is still posing huge problems for organizations, with 79% citing an inability to connect information from different systems. And without a modern and scalable platform that connects to other information systems and data repositories to serve as centralized content hub, delivering a consistent user experience becomes very challenging indeed.
This is a common side effect due to the way in which information has been traditionally managed within the enterprise. Far too often, different systems (each with their own content and data repositories) have sprung up all over the business, leading to a system sprawl that is disjointed, disconnected, and often out of control.
Modernization can regain control over this chaos, by providing standardized connectors into the numerous line of business systems as well as content and file systems currently in use. They bring these entities together by knowing where content and data resides within the business - and then acting as a centralized information hub. This hub not only serves as a common place to way to access information, but also as a platform on which to build future internal solutions and to ultimately deliver outstanding customer experience.
3. Your CFO will love you for it.
Information management initiatives are traditionally difficult to sell to internal stakeholders. Productivity increases, reduced time searching for information and streamlined processes can all deliver significant benefits, but often are difficult to explain and come with a hefty price tag.
Information Management Modernization is different.
Modernization comes in two phases: connect and consolidate, with each having different but equally valuable benefits.
The connect phase focuses on rapid integration of the disparate information systems within the business - not looking to rip and replace, but instead to leverage the value of the systems already installed. This can deliver instant benefits with significant savings from reduced search times, increased access to previously locked data, and the ability to cloud- and mobile-enable previously stale and idling legacy systems. Combined, these result in rapid return on investment (ROI).
The second aspect of modernization is based around consolidation - or the realization that once you have connected the various data and content systems within your enterprise, some older systems can likely be retired. There can be a number of reasons for this: perhaps they are no longer supported, have expensive maintenance contracts, or require specific hardware or skills to maintain. Moving away from systems in these circumstances is sensible - but the old “rip and replace” approach placed serious stress on the systems and staff involved in migration projects. With your information systems connected (including legacy systems), migration can be an ongoing (and more importantly background) process that takes place completely transparently to the users, and on the timescales defined by the business.
The long term benefit to this approach is that the organization can retire unneeded systems, potentially freeing significant resources and funds accordingly, and ultimately delivering a reduced total cost of ownership (TCO) back in to the business.