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From disparate solutions to platformisation: The future of IT consolidation

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By Natasha Rock, Lead at IT Support Group, APAC at GoTo, India

The story of ‘platformisation’ is not uncommon. Though the term might be nascent in the Indian tech landscape, businesses are now reconsidering the efficacy of using multiple, disparate applications. Multiple tailwinds drive the demands of packaged platforms, namely the unmatched pace of digital adoption and the cost-effectiveness of data consumption in India. Despite the macroeconomic uncertainties in tech, a recent report by IDC states that Indian businesses will continue to prioritise digital transformation and IT modernisation. That means businesses must readily invest in digital platforms if they want to compete and succeed in the future.

Platform-based IT solutions have proven disruptive for several industries, having revolutionised the way businesses operate, enabling them to streamline processes and improve efficiency. However, while digital platforms can provide significant benefits, it is also important that businesses find the right scope and size for their needs. A recent report by Forrester highlights the importance of investing in the right-sized platform for businesses. Forrester found that investing in the wrong-sized platform can lead to several challenges, including increased complexity, cost overruns, and a lack of flexibility. Platformisation may be a solution to solve the need for multiple applications, however IT leaders must be careful to invest in the ‘right sized platform’ that offers the right functionality based on their business requirements.

Right Sized Platform Wins

IT leaders focused on supporting business growth are also frantically searching for innovative solutions to drive down costs. Many have to juggle the need to sustain a robust IT management system without incurring high maintenance cost and fragmenting internal resources to support. It is therefore imperative for IT leaders to look to platforms that are cloud-based, operate on SaaS models and provides all the functionality they need and none that they don’t.

For instance, a business deploys multiple solutions to manage its workforce – one dedicated solely to remote and flexible communication, another to managing employee records, and a couple more that outsource the orchestration of resources needed to manage the day-to-day operations of the business. That creates a problem.

Platform models represent a strategic shift towards encouraging mass-market adoption and promoting a diverse range of third-party interactions. Rather than relying solely on product-related sources of competitive advantage like product differentiation, these platforms focus on network-related sources of competitive advantage such as the network effects of connecting multiple users and third parties. While businesses may be tempted to adopt the “have-it-all” packaged platforms that are currently popular in the market, it’s important to consider the potential challenges associated with such platforms. As per many reports, these platforms generate various types and degrees of data that evolve quickly, often faster than most companies’ ability to adapt, which can result in technical debt. However, there are right-sized platforms available that cater to specific business requirements and can help businesses to streamline their operations and stay competitive in today’s market. Businesses can maximise their efficiency and optimise their growth potential by using have-it-all remote IT communication and support tools to manage their essential connections with employees and customers.

Always Pick Purposefulness

Choosing solutions that adapt to the way a business runs and understanding that only the right kind of digitalisation will help a business unlock growth are key. Once a business can conduct a 360-degree mapping and unlock a comprehensive understanding of its business requirements and what may enhance its productivity, the rest comes easy.

For example, if the IT leader in a small business can deploy just one particular umbrella tech stack that not only caters to most of its business needs cost-effectively but also plays it light on its IT infrastructure and budget, the purpose of a single tech stack would triumph over multiple disparate and often redundant solutions.  What follows is the practical approach to minimising IT headaches making flexible work possible and creating a resilient, future-proof flexible work environment.

Preparing for a Flexible and Agile Future

There is but one question business leaders need to ask themselves – is there a need to build a company that goes far or just a company that goes fast? CIOs need to evolve their current IT environment to have a flexible, pragmatic, responsive tech stack with a purpose-based architecture. It is essential that the customised stack can support the integration of legacy systems with new technologies, dynamic offers, and omnichannel experiences without adding complexity to its existing IT system and consuming more IT resources to maintain.

With new digital platforms, businesses can save valuable time, resources, and costs by consolidating multiple applications under one umbrella. Many platforms also provide the flexibility to quickly scale operations up or down as required while obtaining the most recent updates to benefit the business. This strengthens their business resilience and continuity – the two vital qualities that have emerged as important for businesses of any size aspiring to flourish in today’s adaptable and rapidly evolving environment.

 

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