Technology and Data Questions

Too many companies suffer from data and technology investments that are siloed by function or business and not clearly connected to the company’s value creation strategy. To go beyond digital, you will need to make a priority of your data and technology strategy and be able to clearly and tangibly demonstrate how it directly enables your company’s place in the world and your plan for value creation and preservation. The challenge often is to make choices among the abundance of options, and to sequence those choices in such a way that they reinforce one another and lead to a measurable impact. As you consider how to shape your technology and data agenda, we offer some questions that may help you prioritize what is right for your company:

  • Is the technology investment contributing to the heart of your differentiating capabilities, or is it supporting other needs?
  • Is the investment supporting you in building for tomorrow or securing today? What impact will the investment have on your company’s place in the world? 
  • Can you clearly and honestly measure and quantify the business impact in terms of value creation or value preservation? Does the investment measurably pay for itself, or is it based on assumptions that can be validated only in the future? (Note: if the investment cannot demonstrably pay for itself and is based on assumptions that you cannot validate today, then it is very likely not granular enough and not planned well enough to approve.)
  • Can you acquire and retain the talent critical to developing that technology and making it relevant for your business? Is it essential to your differentiating capabilities to build the talent base within your organization? 
  • Does the technology capability you need already exist somewhere in your ecosystem or in the broader supplier market? Can you tap into it while protecting your differentiating capabilities and not putting your competitive advantage at risk? 
  • Can you build reliable partnerships and relationships to execute with a balance of speed and efficiency? 
  • Are all the stakeholders who need to change to realize the value of your technology investments committed to doing so? Can they be held accountable? Do you have the governance model in place to ensure and enforce individual and collaborative accountability?
  • Are your organization and culture ready for change? Can you ensure that your people can incorporate the technology you build?

This is a starter list and certainly not exhaustive. However, working through these questions can help you address the essential success factors needed to shape the data and technology strategy that will support your beyond digital vision.

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