It has become a truism that Digital Business cuts both ways. The benefits of digitization are clear and well documented: organizations get speed, agility and scale and can manage campaigns with more scrutiny than in the analog world. In that way, digitization has been a boon for businesses who are seeking to grow while managing costs and striving to do the most with the available resources.
Digitization has, however, a downside as well. The Internet as a backbone for an organization’s connection to the outside world (customers, partners, media, financial institutions, consumers) is a powerful evolution in infrastructure, but is one fraught with enormous risk. These risks come from both outside the business and within.
In the lexicon of the technology world, these risks can be largely reduced to three ideas: security, compliance, and governance. Each of these three is of massive importance, and each requires the right mix of science and art to administer with success.
“The Big Push”
This trifecta of Digital (IT-based) Business constitutes what I call “The Big Push.” All organizations are pushed to build a framework in which this trifecta is not only manageable now, but in the future as well. This framework has to be absorptive and assimilative- new ideas have to be taken in and, especially in the case of Security and Compliance, have to be able to assimilate new attack vectors and new compliance regimes. Incidentally, neither Security nor Compliance are “predictable” and therefore a good framework takes the “unknown unknowns” and converts them—at least—to “known unknowns.”
“The Big Push” has put Digital Business at a crossroads; in my experience, 90% of organizations need some sort of assistance in navigating through this crossroads to a “safe” place.
Fundamental questions that need to be answered or at least answerable with this framework
1. Can Business Agility and IT Governance be simultaneously managed and prioritized?
2. Can Heightened Levels of Security threat be managed and accommodated?
3. Can ongoing and often sudden changes in the Compliance regime be managed?
These three questions, if answered in the affirmative, provide a powerful foundation for Digital Business insofar as they reduce the possibilities of blockage and even Digital Disaster.
“The Big Push” has been given to all of us. How ready are we?