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Why Keeping Up With Tech Advances Is Essential

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Article by Z Ware Founder and Managing Director Phillip Zada.

What if doctors weren’t constantly updating their skills and offering up-to-date advice? I think we all expect doctors to do this by default so they can provide the best possible care.

The IT department is no exception. Digital transformation is often complex because technology is constantly evolving. What legacy items are left over? Will the new and old work together? Or do you have an entirely new system that needs to be implemented?

Just like medical fraternity where different doctors/hospitals have different skills, so is IT. Some digital transformation companies are experts in a particular technology. If you buy, understand their expertise and whether it fits your requirements.

As with any profession, IT professionals should be read and advised. You need to look for data and information from multiple sources, look at upcoming technologies, consult annual reports that show trends, and be prepared to make mistakes.

The manager/owner needs to excite the staff and encourage innovation.

One of the most common problems we see is that companies underestimate the time required to execute a project. Many companies want to get work done as quickly as possible (even before the job is done!).

One of the biggest challenges when considering modifying/updating an existing system is the lack of long-term planning and reluctance to embrace iterative development.

Most organizations just want to complete their transformation and move on to the next project. But that short-sighted view gets many organizations into trouble.

You may want to extend or change your business processes, but your system just can’t support it. In most cases no changes are made. Or the company will increase labor costs to implement the change.

Think long term. It cannot be stressed enough.

Choose a technique that you are familiar with. Make sure you can update. Make sure your staff are familiar with the technology, and even if they leave, make sure that those who come in understand it and, more importantly, update it.

If you decide to get a solution that isn’t out-of-the-box, you need to allow your employees to maintain and evolve it. This is the mindset when starting your digital transformation. That’s not to say that off-the-shelf solutions are always the ones touted. I will do it on the day.

Trusting vendor partners is also important, but many are skeptical. They believe that the vendor provides the solution only to make a profit (or because it’s the only technology the vendor fully understands).

Another problem we run into is that our internal project teams often lose interest and want to move on to the next project. Teams need to stay focused and this means sticking to the task at hand.

Additionally, businesses need to invest in solutions that have a long lifespan. Some companies can’t afford to hire full-time staff to work on their solutions, so that’s something to consider. Also, if you have in-house staff, make sure others in your company have the knowledge, even if someone leaves.

Yes, think about your project’s short-term goals, but also understand what your long-term goals are. It’s important to keep abreast of technological developments, but you should also avoid believing everything that may be written about new technologies. Do your own research. Get multiple views.

Finally, when choosing a vendor, understand not only their delivery history, but also whether they have been involved after the first delivery. Technology is like a child and it keeps growing. You should do the same.