LIVE FROM DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION WORLD, COPENHAGEN: Industry bosses opened up on the challenges of digitising their operations, highlighting issues with data quality, legacy organisational structures and a growing disconnect between chief executives and technology leaders within businesses.
During a keynote panel, Vikram Sinha, president and CEO of Indosat Ooredoo Hutchison (pictured, second left), acknowledged a frustration among CEOs with CTOs and CIOs, accusing them of thinking they are “beyond the law” and “too obsessed with technology”.
“They have to come out and get into a larger role of what problem we are trying to solve, what can this technology do to fuel growth. Until they get to that I think they will find it difficult to survive.”
For Colt CEO Keri Gilder (pictured, right), the two biggest priorities to address a so-called digitisation gap are data quality and a focus on process.
“If you look at any legacy telecoms provider, you’re going to find a problem with data. We have a problem finding the golden source of data,” she said.
On process, Gilder said organisations cannot just focus on the technology, and if there was a push to re-stack the OSS and BSS, “its absolutely important to look at the end-to-end process”.
“This is to ensure you’re not creating a bad process in the new system because you’ll have a similar negative outcome that will absolutely not give you the benefits you are looking for.”
Gilder suggested fellow panellist, Kiran Thomas, the president of Reliance Industries (pictured, middle), may not have such issues because operator Jio is a relatively new entrant with a greenfield deployment.
However, while Thomas noted it is indeed a young company, many of its systems were already on version three and version four, as there was time and cost pressures to deliver when first launching.
“Typically, that’s how legacy starts because you do certain things tactically,” Thomas said.
He added an important strategy to avoid issues with new technology is to keep the operation team separate from the product team.
The latter needs “space to just step back and think about the whole the big picture, understand transforming processes and the next outcomes,” he added.