Businesses must learn to unlearn in order to transform post-pandemic

Member Article

Learning to unlearn: How businesses can digitally transform post-pandemic

In the post-pandemic business world, the rapid changes experienced accelerated the need for adaptation and innovation. Peak’s inaugural Decision Intelligence report shone a light on the cracks of many businesses post Covid-19, revealing 64% of C-suite leaders found that the decision-making process is more difficult and complex as a result of the pandemic.

The overwhelming disruption and growing difficulty of making decisions following the pandemic has prompted businesses to reinvent themselves and build greater resilience. They’re rethinking how they use technology, people and processes in pursuit of new business models and revenue streams, driven by large scale changes in customer experience expectations and digital transformation.

Digital transformation aims to replace inefficient manual processes or old technologies with digital technologies. It optimises costs and efficiency, rapidly develops new types of products and services, and revolutionises customer experience.

Whilst the potential benefits for businesses and their customers are huge, the large-scale adoption of new technologies poses a significant challenge. Digital transformation is one of the most difficult business projects, requiring new ways of thinking and working.

According to McKinsey, only 16% of digital transformations result in successfully improved performance. Despite these damning statistics, most established businesses continue to think that incremental changes to their existing tech or using a Big Four consultancy will help their transformations succeed.

Especially in established markets, businesses are often tempted to go with the tried and tested ways of operating. However, the parameters of the game have changed, and companies must recognise this in order to successfully digitally transform. The ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ is predicted to transform technologies and how businesses think, plan and make decisions. Therefore, businesses need to unlearn 20th century methods and rapidly adopt 21st century ones.

In other words, they need to start adopting AI.

Looking inwards rather than outwards

The Big Four consultancies, often traditional and outdated when it comes to the technology sphere, are out of their depth with AI and have no experience in leading this change. Businesses instead need to start thinking about how they can build something based on their own data, help them make sense of it despite its complexity, and use technology explicitly designed to drive outcomes.

Just as business functions need their own system of record – sales and marketing have CRM, operations have ERP systems, finance departments have accounting software – businesses need a new kind of system to think smarter and make better informed decisions. At the core of ensuring digital transformation success is business leaders making timely, effective and knowledgeable decisions. In other words, every business now needs its own, dedicated, central AI platform to build and run its AI.

AI is for everyone

Many of the world’s iconic, biggest and most successful consumer-facing businesses, including Amazon, Apple and Netflix, are using AI today. They increase revenues and profits by giving customers what they want, when they want – and before they even know they need it.

Now, AI is no longer reserved for the tech giants of the world. It’s now accessible to businesses of all sizes. It is also available to everyone within those organizations too.

AI is also no longer only the domain of data scientists - commercial leaders, functional heads and teams on the ground can also use AI to augment and transform their decision making. With the right AI technology, every single person in an organization can use AI to inform their daily and weekly decisions, reduce the time needed on data crunching and spend more time on strategic and creative work.

**Supercharging your teams **

Only a central AI platform has the power to combine disparate types of data and information from across a siloed business and enrich this data with meaning and utility. A core, personalised central AI platform enables businesses to make smarter and faster decisions to accelerate growth and profit, and ensures that decisions across the business are made in sync, with full visibility of all the relevant data and of the impact of all decisions made on the rest of the business.

With this central AI platform, businesses will now be able to combine large amounts of data from sales, marketing, supply chains and other parts of their businesses. They can use this data to create their own AI and train it to make smarter and faster decisions. These decisions can vary from streamlining and strengthening supply chains, reducing carbon emissions, or better predicting demand for products and services.

This platform does not look to replace people, or automate large parts of their business. Instead, it should augment existing team members, and help them make decisions based on their experience faster and more consistently than ever before.

This is what’s known as Decision Intelligence, and in a post-pandemic world, it’s going to be the category of technology that helps businesses be agile, responsive and stay ahead of their competition. Decision Intelligence is how businesses thrive in a world forever changed by the pandemic.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Tom New, Head of Product Marketing .

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