Digital transformation (DX) is another one of those “newer” terms you hear or see a good bit of in business articles or discussions today. But does it mean what you think it does? Maybe not.

If productivity in your business takes place via laptops and networks, and maybe over wi-fi, you probably feel pretty transformed right now. Maybe so! Let’s look at the actual definition:

“Digital transformation (DX) is the reworking of the tools, processes and strategies within an organization by leveraging current technologies.”

That “reworking” is meant to result in obvious improvement in productivity and go straight to your bottom line in both revenue and other resources. That is, in fact, the entire point of DX.

Let’s step back for a minute. Chances are, if you’re reading this with pointed interest, you aren’t that happy with your business technology. Maybe you’re thinking that the more you contribute to it (effort, time, dollars), the less you get out of it. There’s always something else. You’re supposed to be digitally transformed but the ROI is saying, “no”.

Well, give yourself a break. Please. There was a time when a business owner or manager could master any technology the business needed, but friend, I’m telling you, that time is long past. You are not meant to fill that role. You are meant to further your business.

Information technology must allow an organization to focus its investments in talent and research, of development dollars, on solutions that support its core business, and the unique requirements and processes which differentiate that core business. Information technology, in other words, is a tool, not an end product. An asset, absolutely, but not an accomplishment in itself.

If you even think about your business IT, it should be either around the security of knowing that one phone call or email gets an immediate response, so that if there’s an issue, it’s no longer your issue, and as good as resolved. Or, it could be the pure delight of knowing that it costs less and gives you more than at any time in the past.

“Current” is the keyword

Not long ago, we devoted a post (link) to explaining why you must update IT equipment far more often than you do your car. That’s really the key component of DX, and it’s made possible with the “as a service” concept offered by (some) managed IT providers. Yes, your laptops and servers and OS and apps are updated often and it’s all included in one monthly fee (even your office phones, by the way), and that’s a very good thing because there is radical change going on in IT right now. It’s our job to harness that change for the benefit of your business.

Here’s a “top of the news” example of how change in IT can mean so much to you. There are many huge data centers (each one part of “the cloud”) in Tampa and in Miami, in Houston, and other cities hit hard by the weather disasters of the past month.  Everyone with data stored or apps running in any of those locations should know there is another identical copy of everything, geographically remote from any threatened area. Probably more than one copy, and at least three locations. So, if Miami might get hit, you get a call from your managed IT provider saying, “Hey, we’re going to swap you to Memphis (or Cleveland or Kansas City) tonight. You won’t notice anything, it’s just best practice to let you know.”

It’s a relatively new process for a typical business to enjoy this service. Many businesses with real data on real servers housed in areas hit broadside by Maria or Irma or Harvey are at this moment way up the creek because they are not actually digitally transformed.

It’s just the plain truth: you can try to keep up with information technology on your own, or even with an in-house team. But the changes taking place truly are radical, and will become more so. In-house IT is great for many functions, but not for your IT infrastructure (hardware, networks, cybersecurity, and often, communication). The answer is to get out in front of it with a managed IT provider who is entirely focused on keeping your business in a state of profitable digital transformation.

Let’s talk about it! (205)332-1600 or