When you are not able to change your environment, accept the new frames, adapt to them and focus on uncovering new opportunities.
The million-dollar question is – literally – how do we come out of this crisis stronger. Depending on the study, researchers claim that 9% to 42% of companies will embrace this abrupt change, reinvent themselves and secure winner’s position post-crisis by disrupting their sector.
The role of IT will be instrumental in securing that future – it is now that the cards are being dealt.
Survival of the fittest = most agile
Now in our 2nd month of the corona-crisis, the business continuity and cash-flow have hopefully been secured – to the extent possible and at least for the time being.
You now must secure the future. For that you need solid facts. In case your competitors fail to get their ducks in a row you have an excellent opportunity to revive your business and take a leap that will give you a strong competitive advantage.
Do not let the feeling of uncertainty cloud your judgement. Do not follow what feels most natural and intuitive: to protect, scale down, hide. You need all your rational thinking powers to surgically evaluate the situation and take bold decisions. Resilience is key.
Cut costs or invest? Both – but do it smart. Ensure you have your cost baseline in place
Almost all companies have been looking at their cost picture. Most of what could seem, at a first glance, business-non-critical initiatives have been frozen. Makes sense? Not completely.
Few companies have a holistic overview and effective control of their costs. Maybe the direct cost picture for a given product is clear: you have been building your reports for years now. But the vision blurs quickly as you move away from your vertical. Do you have a clear cost picture for the ‘auxiliary’ functions?
Let us have a look at the IT spend as a pivotal business-enabling function with the budgets snowballing every year. The corona-situation has exposed the need and accelerated the digital shift – at present it is the IT that powers most sales. The cloud business is booming. And it is just the beginning. With the change in buying habits and the need for impeccable information exchange, the importance of IT will only increase – from an enabler, IT is becoming an integral and critical part of the product offering.
Table: The Impact of COVID-19 on 2020 IT Budgets
Bain & Company – COVID-19 Implications: Early Perspective from IT decision makers in North America, March 2020; quoted after Apptio.
Typically, the CIO controls the cost split into IT categories, but very seldom the CIO can assign the costs to a given product or service. Without the latter how can top management know, which product is truly profitable and worth investing in? Leverage your finance function and include them in the discussions from the start – you really do not have the time for silos.
Excel will not help you anymore. Fortunately, there are solid tools out there helping companies link what is often still perceived as auxiliary costs, with the core products. For instance, Apptio offers a robust platform for IT cost management meeting the modern CIO needs. The suite includes Cloudability to manage the most dynamic in usage and growing in spend cost element – your cloud.
IT is the one to unlock the commercial opportunities and secure your company’s future existence, so all eyes should be on you as CIO. Establish your decision base, think out-of-the-box, as to what the business needs the most and pursue those digitalization projects!
And do it fast – agility is key.
Want to have an open discussion about your current digital transformation and cloud challenges, then please reach out to one of our experts.