The Dawn of the DX Economy in the Asia Pacific

The pace of technology change and adoption has continued to accelerate, shuttering businesses across the globe that fail to transform digitally. The downfalls of corporate giants such as J.C. Penny and Yahoo are telling: even the most established companies can succumb to competitive forces. Startups powered by third-party platform technologies, as seen with Uber and Airbnb, can rewrite the rules with their game-changing business models.

IDC predicts that 55% of Asia Pacific organizations will be digitally determined by 2020, transforming markets through new business models and digitally enabled products and services. The digital transformation (DX) momentum has picked up in the Asia/Pacific region. But scaling these digital initiatives across the enterprise is an immediate, pressing challenge for a majority (62%) of them, according to IDC research commissioned by Fujitsu, which surveyed more than 1,000 companies in the Asia Pacific.

Digital Deadlocks

According to the research, 57% of Asia Pacific organizations see DX as a top strategic priority, and 51% see investing in new technologies to enable digitization as their top investment priority.

However, for many companies, execution is mainly on an ad hoc, project basis, and progress is neither predictable nor repeatable. Business and IT goals may be aligned but do not focus on the disruptive potential of their DX initiatives. Outdated performance metrics, silos of technology and innovation, and a shortage of digital expertise continue to be obstacles to transformation.

The top challenge cited by survey respondents was this: cultural change management and digital mindset.

Time to Rethink Strategies

It’s time for the C-suite to rethink strategies, starting with a change in mindset and organizational culture, particularly as co-creation with partners becomes necessary to drive further value. Adopting a data-centric digital platform to overcome legacy and integration issues will also be an essential building block for success.

Here are four DX best practices that management can start to adopt today:

Create a digital road map that is modular, scalable, and extensible

Too many organizations have built a digital road map that is rooted in the here and now, resulting in tactical road maps that achieve near-term goals. Every organization is part of a broader ecosystem, so it would make sense for their digital road map to leverage and complement the ecosystem or even wider community they belong to.

Take the aging population in Hong Kong as an example. Hong Kong residents have the longest life expectancy in the world. Over the next few decades, chronic health problems and long-term sickness will add unprecedented pressure on the public healthcare system. There is a pressing need to use technology to address manpower shortage, especially in the area of long-term health monitoring and “aging in place.” Fujitsu Hong Kong recognized this problem early on and has over the past few years worked with local partners to co-create digital solutions to address this societal problem.

Define new KPIs that reflect the digital-native enterprise

Legacy KPIs don’t work. New KPIs and DX scorecard need to be defined. KPIs are required for each part of the business and each of the DX tenets.

Adopt a data-centric digital platform

The absence of the right technology architecture to accelerate new capabilities is holding back many enterprises in their digital transformation. This has primarily been driven by the fact that digital IT environments were often established separately from the traditional enterprise IT platform, with APIs and integration services connecting the two of them (usually as an afterthought).

Help the IT team evolve as DX maturity evolves

IT organizations within an enterprise need to embark on their own journey of transformation, evolving to understand the needs of customers and to be able to develop new innovations rapidly. If the IT organization is not evolving, it may wind up impeding the overall digital transformation of the organization.

If you’re ready to move now, you could gain a significant competitive advantage. But you’ll need to move fast.

Leo Ng, chief executive officer, Fujitsu Hong Kong authored this article.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of CDOTrends.