April 14, 2022

How Intelligent Operations Create Agile Organizations

When you think of thought-provoking leaders in the business world, there are several names that come to mind. McKinsey & Company. The IBM Institute for Business Value(IBV). Harvard Business Review. Recently, research from all three of these accredited institutions has shown that the organizations that will lead us over the next three to five years are those that take strides to become more agile. With an effective and stable backbone built into their business operations, organizations can complete highly successful transformations that drive gains in efficiency, customer satisfaction, and performance. The paths they follow on their way to leading the pack can differ, but one constant is the participation and investment in intelligent operations such as ecosystems and workflows. According to IBM’s Institute for Business Value, these ecosystems can increase growth and innovation as well. So how can an intelligent ecosystem drive agility and push organizations to become innovative leaders? Let’s take a look.

Born Agile Organizations

There are organizations that start a cut above others by beginning with an agile operating model. These born-agile organizations have an advantage over a large portion of the business world in their ability to be resilient and adapt in the face of disruption. Agile organizations, especially those born agile, are those slated to be at the forefront of their respective industries over the next several years, and hopefully further into the future as well. Organizations that are not born agile are responsible for partaking in transformations that allow them to catch up to or surpass their competition, instead of hoping for agility to invade their operations. According to the IBV, “Organizations that achieved a highly successful agile transformation had a three times higher chance of becoming a top-quartile performer among peers than those who had not transformed.” They’ve also seen that the more successful agile transformations deliver roughly 30% increases in efficiency, customer satisfaction, employee engagement, and operational performance, along with operations running five to ten times faster with accelerated and innovative techniques.

Passing the born-agile organizations is the result of installing agility into core operations. Businesses fresh off of a transformation process witnessed higher chances of becoming a top-quartile performer than the born-agile structures and had greater chances of developing more mature operating models. The “do it the hard way” mentality of undergoing a transformation allows those organizations to learn what is needed when creating their operating models. When their ecosystem and partners assist and influence decisions, we’ve seen larger gains and stronger operations produced. IBM states “these gains in speed, customer centricity, operations, innovation, employee engagement, and productivity manifest themselves on the bottom line.” And those results are impressive, with 65 percent of highly successful transformations reporting they had also achieved a significant impact on their financial performance.

The Makings of a Successful Transformation

The question on everyone’s mind should be how to undergo a successful transformation. A key focus during the transformation process should be on the ecosystem an organization exists in and how to increase collaboration and engagement with partners. Specifically, creation and participation in an intelligent ecosystem. Intelligent ecosystems utilize technology to assist with collaboration and positively impact engagement with external partners. IBM also shares that the companies most focused on ecosystem engagement generated higher growth and more business value, and these intelligent forms of partner ecosystems deliver efficiency and innovation at levels we haven’t seen before. Imagine collaborating with partners using real-time insights that allow you to be connected at levels you’ve never seen before. By undergoing impactful transformations with an intelligent ecosystem, businesses can understand important operations better, like who to target with their products and what their opportunities are by product, local market, and customer. This deep dive into their operations can drive revenue or solve issues like optimizing fulfillments so orders never go missing.

McKinsey recommends that leaders around the world consider their actions in four different categories, including building a unique ecosystem and “bringing privileged insights to decision making by tapping treasure troves of data.” These instructions echo those of IBM, which believes leaders in ecosystems make their presence known by identifying unique strategies and approaches that fit the setting they exist in. The presence of an intelligent ecosystem and the technology behind it create insights with the help of those in the partner ecosystem. IBM also has four categories that successful leaders excel in, one of which is agility, defined as a large roadblock on the path to success. It’s evident that there is a trend across several industries, which is that success in the future will come to those who begin to transform their organization with technology that makes their operations more agile and as a result, focused on the health of their ecosystem.

The integration of intelligent operations into the structure of an organization is a valuable component of the transformation process. Technology adopters that invest in ecosystems gained a revenue growth premium of 40%, and the investment into intelligent ecosystems and workflows plays a large part in that figure. These intelligent operations are the mechanism for transmitting information across ecosystems to drive better, faster processes and decision-making that unlock exponential value. Leading organizations aiming for speed and efficiency are succeeding by building intelligent operations that are streamlined, optimized, and leverage protected data that allows seamless and frictionless connectivity. Researchers at IBM say “organizations that have embraced [intelligent operations] distinguish themselves through new insights, flexible operations, and constant learning that yields significant value.”

Roadblocks on the Path to Success

A negative to this process is that companies have no time to waste when it comes to transformation, as “any organization that isn’t seeking new approaches is on borrowed time,” according to a McKinsey report. Organizations that are fixating only on profits will miss out on many other potential benefits, as they fail to understand all of the needs of their ecosystem. The leaders across industries and ecosystems are those who will be ready for the future by distinguishing what makes them unique and bringing value not just to their organization, but throughout their ecosystem as well. New models can’t just be mature, they also need to be quick and frictionless to instill agility into the heart of operations. Fast decisions in real-time can aid in outperforming the competition while assisting the health of the surrounding ecosystem. These rapid decisions are made with insights from different sources that can give a comprehensive view of what the ecosystem needs.

Tapping into several different data sources creates more impactful insights for an ecosystem. McKinsey's research shows that amassing a wide variety of partners throughout the ecosystem can help build data-rich technology platforms that support growth and innovation. By collaborating with partners to create valuable insights, or intelligence, leaders will see how data can continue to deliver key information that influences decision making and creates value. This will provide an increase in productivity and reduce risk, as sharing information between partners helps improve the development of the ecosystem. Continuous and actionable information can help transform an organization into a top performer and leader. So what does this mean for intelligent ecosystems? The technology that drives this intelligence becomes more beneficial to all when partners clear the fog to share data safely and securely. The successful intelligent ecosystems can see costs reduced by around 11% thanks to blurring boundaries and utilizing different data sources from not just internal capabilities, but partners as well.

The Benefits of Intelligent Ecosystems

Intelligent ecosystems can benefit businesses in more ways than just revenue, growth, or efficiency. They’ve been shown to assist in areas such as marketing and merchandising, with multiple data sources proving to be the key contributor. There are benefits for all partners in an intelligent ecosystem, such as new technology allowing for collaborative work anywhere and anytime with visualization allowing for a better understanding of how to deliver what consumers need. However, according to IBM, less than half of C-suite executives are using this technology to leverage real-time data and transform their operations. The agile operating models can bring instant insights and seamless support at every level, but executives have a plethora of obstacles to surpass, including spending a large amount of time and resources attempting to figure out how to pursue an agile transformation.

Moving Forward with Intelligence

At The Intelligence Exchange, we have the answer to your agile transformation. You don’t have to waste time or resources to try and figure this out when we do the heavy lifting for you. With our Intelligence Exchange platform, we enable collaboration across your entire ecosystem, delivering you the agility and resilience you need to succeed and grow your operations. We use AI and other analytical methods to bring you the continuous and actionable intelligence your organization needs to make key business decisions. By utilizing many different properly protected data sources, and more than just yours or your partners, this intelligence assists in accelerating revenue and optimizing fulfillment, along with measuring and improving not just your performance, but your partner’s performance as well.

This intelligence is available where you want it, when you want it, and how you want it. Our platform and technology integrate with a plethora of systems, allowing it to continually deliver intelligence to help positively affect business results. It also increases innovation, a key factor in agility, as Exchanges are constantly being updated, improved, and added to so that ecosystems can continue to reap the benefits. Visualizations that enable partner collaboration are built into an Intelligence Exchange, furthering the development and collaboration of ecosystems.

For More and Sources

The research leaders of the world know that it takes innovation and agility to achieve organizational goals and success. Collaboration that drives ecosystems forward and brings positive benefits to all partners is impactful and matters to everyone from executives to customers. And an Intelligence Exchange can bring that to the table. If your organization requires a transformation to put it ahead of competitors, our platform and intelligence are perfect to do just that. As the most qualified way to develop an intelligent ecosystem, Intelligence Exchanges from The Intelligence Exchange deliver exactly what an organization needs to become an agile leader in today’s business environment. Let us help you move forward with better intelligence and better results. Email us at [email protected] to set up a call or learn more about how an Intelligence Exchange is the answer for your organization.

Sources used in this article:

The Impact of Agility: How to shape your organization to compete

The Virtual Enterprise The Power of Market-making Platforms and Ecosystems

The Virtual Enterprise The Magic of Extended Intelligent Workflows

The rise of commerce media: The opportunity for CPGs

Four ways to accelerate the creation of data ecosystems

Forging the future of supply chains

The 4 Pillars of Successful Digital Transformations

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