The notion that technological progress underpins economic performance and enhances welfare is well established.

Within anthropology, human history can be distilled into a single equation: E x T = C where E stands for Energy, T for Technology and C for Culture. Harnessing energy and technology drives cultural development.

To thrive in the rapidly evolving digital era, companies able to capture human Energy and embrace new Technologies will successfully shape their Corporate development.

To drive corporate development, firms must master their ecosystems to stimulate innovation and get things done.

A fully integrated, centrally co-ordinated program improves the chances of a successful transformation. To create a successful platform, companies need to:

  • Compose a digital index to measure the internal landscape
  • Implement a digital quotient to cultivate innovation
  • Integrate program mandate fully into executive team
  • Combine clean sheet design with legacy infrastructure elimination
  • Place end users at the centre of design initiatives

A digital index is required to facilitate a global heatmap depicting which technology toolsets need to be deployed to streamline each business activity. The prioritisation of focus areas is determined by commercial impact.

More than 70% of a technology budget is generally spent on system maintenance rather than innovation. The purpose of a digital quotient is to engineer a shift towards infrastructure development.

Firms must decide whether to use in house capabilities versus engaging external vendors.

Innovation centres, data analytics teams and the vendor management office need to work in partnership with the business to effectively balance cost, time, quality and risk factors. Active stakeholder involvement reduces the risk of costly mistakes.

The human dimension is key to progress. Innovation is owned by everybody. To drive this forward, firms need to encourage exchange programs, attendance of industry convening events, foster client relationship management initiatives and travel.

To reap the rewards of digital transformation, investment banks should look to the retail banking sector. Retail banks are further up the technology stack due to digitally empowered customers demanding seamless, convenient, self-service banking experiences irrespective of channel.

Corporate investors are increasingly demanding sophisticated digital solutions such as online trade portals. Investment banks have an excellent opportunity for clean sheet design.

Smart technology decisions combined with effective deployment of human capital will set leading firms apart.

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