Deploy IT to drive innovation and growth: Sunil Rawlani

Sunil Rawlani, Digital Transformation Strategist highlights how CIOs and leaders are uniquely positioned to drive innovation and therefore they need to have the talent and skills to be forward looking and visionary.

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To be more competitive in the global marketplace, businesses need to be driving more innovation. “Transformation is getting the business to overhaul or reinvent,” said Sunil Rawlani, Digital Transformation Strategist.

All business units require information technology to some extent, and therefore CIOs are always involved in all aspect of the business in an organization. “Enterprise digital agenda should envelop digital branding, digital collaboration, digital commerce, digital sourcing and digital synergy,” he said.

CIOs and leaders are uniquely positioned to drive innovation, influence cultural change, and deliver ingenious strategy. They need to have the talent and skills to be forward looking and visionary. 

The role of the CIO must evolve from being the chief information officer to being the chief innovation officer,” said Rawlani. 

Organizations should aim working towards unified vision of strategy, unified workspaces, use robotics to increase productivity. They should transition to algorithmic process delegation, leveraging machine learning, AI apps, smart sourcing and resource pools.

Rawlani believes process is another big layer, and every organization should have an enhanced process management system. 

While it’s clear that technology must be the center of innovation, but IT itself can be a huge barrier to innovation. IT complexities require time, attention and budget to derive business value. However, once IT complexity reduces, it definitely frees up a lot of time and budget for innovation. “Opportunity cost should exceed your budget or investment,” said Rawlani.

Businesses also require to develop an IT organizational structure to support innovation. This includes instituting an emerging technology or innovation drive that focuses on continuously seeking new technologies and evaluating how they might fit to add business value.

He said that CIOs and leaders need to understand how to organize themselves around innovation and how to get the best results from innovation. 

Organizations must first consider a holistic transformation through people, process and structure. They need to work to improve enterprise productivity by reducing complexity and then drive a more agile IT environment.

Leaders and decision makers finally need to consider how they would be able to measure the overall business value and impact, and how they would execute the innovation program successfully.