Building the foundation for digital transformation, with Asystec’s Forde

Victor Forde, Asystec

10 January 2018


Digital Transformation is at its core a business transformation journey and an evolution on how successful businesses are operating to ensure business products and services reach their target market from inception to release, in an agile manner, without sacrificing quality or customer satisfaction.

The need this transformation stems from is the change of behaviour of the consumer who demands a simple digital approach to any service they consume, at any time and anywhere in the world, with a swipe or touch of their finger and now from a simple voice command. The digital devices inputting and consuming services has exploded leading to exponential data growth for businesses to store, secure and maintain. The successful businesses are the ones embracing this digital evolution by changing their business model to meet the new, evolved digital market place in which we now live and operate.

In order to change how a business operates and transform to a digital business, there will, inevitably, be disruption from an organisational, strategic, operational and  supporting technology perspective, to achieve this goal. This is not an overnight transformation and different companies, and indeed even people within the same company, are at different points in the digital transformation maturity timeline.

“The successful businesses are the ones embracing this digital evolution by changing their business model to meet the new, evolved digital market place in which we now live and operate”

There are innovators pioneering with leading edge development methods and incorporating the latest tools and elastic IT infrastructure to support these innovations. At the other end of the scale, there are people well versed, trained, and familiar with more traditional structured approach to bringing services to the market with excellent domain or specialist skillsets. They most likely provided the products and services which brought the business to the successful state it is now enjoying. But business unit leaders responsible for bringing services or product for the business unit to market recognise the need to change to a leaner digitally focussed approach for their services. These business unit leaders are central to the success of the transformation from the traditional legacy application approach, to nimble easily consumable digital services.

If like many of our customers, you are experiencing some cultural clashes between your more mature IT staff who grew up in the world of ITIL and nine-month release cycles, versus the younger generation whom want to release a “just good enough” solution rapidly, then you are not alone.

Asystec works with organisations looking to begin (or have already started) their digital transformation journey by surveying how mature they are currently in a range of areas. While people, process and technology are at the core of any business transformation, Asystec focuses on the technology transformation. We ultimately help customers build the foundation for digital transformation

This transformation has a phased approach and starts with the IT infrastructure underpinning the digital services by adopting technologies that scale in an agile and efficient manner, while looking to shift the large upfront capital spend to more of an OpEx model to ensure the IT infrastructure scales at the same rate as the business. Existing assets can be integrated to ensure value is derived from this IT infrastructure assets so as to ensure, any existing investment in time or money is leveraged and not discarded.

Once a scalable engineered IT infrastructure is adopted, the focus shifts to provisioning in an agile manner. Asystec addresses this by encouraging organisations to adopt a Software Defined Data Centre (SDDC) approach, whereby compute, storage and network services can be provisioned programmatically in automated self-service workflows. This reduces the friction for developers demanding infrastructure rapidly, while providing structure for IT operations, and hence reduces the time to market for new services, accurately, securely and in a compliant fashion.

The next phase of the digital transformation can then shift to where the focus should be which is the application provisioning layer. Once IT Infrastructure can be supplied as a service on-demand, the development team and application teams can focus on building applications in a more lean and nimble manner. Once this phase is designed, built and tested, Asystec can assist in automating the provisioning and decommissioning of the application services to match new business requirements and any increased customer demand. This may be a customised platform of services for a specific use case built on a traditional 3 tier architecture, it could be a modern micro-services architecture built on Docker and Kubrinetes, or it could be a full Platform as a Service offering, from the likes of Pivotal.

This phased approach involves business unit leaders championing the transformation and ensuring key members from numerous areas of the business are involved at all phases of the transformation which, ensures a successful collaborative methodology not ostracising any area of the business during this digital transformation.

Asystec has seen the greatest success when involved at the earliest possible stage to workshop a suitable Digital transformation strategy from conception to implementation. Contact us to investigate making Digital Transformation a reality for your business.

Victor Forde is solutions architect with Asystec



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