Go Beyond Managing Change — Initiate It in 2014!

Change is part of business. And we all have to adapt to it–we all know that. But what if, instead of reacting to change, we had an opportunity to initiate it?

We have that opportunity right now. And AT&T is helping to power this transformation — from infrastructure and security to customer relationships, workforce collaboration, and supply chain management. Before discussing the specifics of this kind of change, let’s take a look at the changing landscape itself.

The Changing Landscape

Several trends define the changing landscape that is readying — and challenging — organizations to initiate large-scale transformation:

  • Innovative growth: Today, it is innovation and productivity that drive growth. To stay competitive, businesses need to harness the ever-evolving technology and make it work for them.
  • Global opportunity: Businesses must look beyond their established markets. Every year a larger share of GDP comes from developing nations and organizations should capture this growth.
  • Changing workforce: Meanwhile, the workforce is changing. Globally, one-third of all workers are highly mobile and can work from anywhere, any time.
  • Everything is mobile: In another six years, almost half of this global workforce will be composed of millennials: hyper-connected, voracious users of MWC Geek2 14technology. Think smart phones, tablets, and apps are everywhere now? Just wait.
  • Bring Your Own Device (BYOD): Many of these smart devices are “bring-your-own.” So they are bought and used without consulting with IT departments, resulting in greater complexity and security risks.

And in the midst of these trends, organizations have to maintain their competitive edge, grow the business, and stay profitable. The problem? After throwing technology at these problems for years, we find ourselves serving technology far more often than it serves us. What can we do to change the current trajectory?

The solution: Become a connected business

Today, the connected business can rewrite the equation for growth, reshaping technology to serve the business and its customers, connecting the business and its stakeholders in transformative ways we never imagined. But several important questions remain: How do we get there? How do we deploy the right infrastructure? Keep our businesses and our data secure? Keep our customers happy? Our employees more productive? And our operations more efficient?

It starts with transforming your business to a connected business. The following are five milestones of the transformed business:

Go Beyond Managing Change1 2 14


1. Transforming infrastructure– Everyone talks about convergence and the cloud — a connected business relies on both. Multiple networks become one. Physical assets become virtual. Your business goes from on-site to on-demand, riding on a single, secure IP network that saves money and makes it easy to deploy advanced communication, collaboration, and machine-to-machine apps. Systems across your entire company can talk to each other seamlessly, and so can your people. Productivity goes up. Costs go down. And your business becomes more flexible and agile…


Go Beyond Managing Change2 2 14


2. Protecting data and assets–Of course, we can’t have all that mobility and agility without security, which should be every bit as mobile as the devices it protects. Security strategies of the connected business can embrace both the network and the cloud, seamlessly, can hunt down threats proactively before they strike, and can minimize the risk to what matters most – your data and your assets. In essence, transformed security gives you freedom — everyone can work the way they want, anywhere, on any device, without compromising the integrity of your enterprise. Once information is secure, it’s time to engage customers.


Go Beyond Managing Change3 2 14


3. Engaging customers–Online or face-to-face, you’re already holding conversations with your customers. Now, if you’re a connected business, you can integrate these separate conversations into a richer, unified customer experience that paints a complete picture of your customer’s preferences. With this picture at their fingertips, sales people can match needs with the right products. Customer information on a tablet can provide better insight in real time. Product specs can be pulled up on the spot. And sales can be completed without touching a register or even without entering the store, using secure, user-friendly mobile sites. Instead of separate transactions, every sale can be part of an ongoing chain of seamless customer interactions. Leading to greater customer satisfaction, loyalty, and — more sales, And just as customers can be engaged, your employees can be empowered.


Go Beyond Managing Change4 2 14


4. Empowering the workforce–They are already mobile and working anytime and anywhere. The connected business takes this to the next level by allowing the diversity of devices, applications, geographies, and work models to come together seamlessly, while keeping everyone moving in the same direction. People aren’t just simply connected. For the first time, they are truly collaborative, be it on corporate devices or their own. They are able to exchange vital data, and more importantly, vital ideas. Solving real business problems in real time. Being more productive — and more empowered — because connected business made true productivity possible.


Go Beyond Managing Change5 2 14


5. Optimizing Operations–Finally, the connected business optimizes its operations. If you’re delivering new product, you know how many shipments arrived, when, and in what condition. If you’re moving inventory, you know where it is at every step of the way and can even know if the warehouse doors are open or shut. Anything can be monitored and tracked, ensuring real time visibility and fast action. And that includes fleets and drivers, making them safer and more productive. Your operations are coordinated. Your sensors, connected devices, and apps are working in sync to improve your bottom line and take you to the next level of efficiency.

Keep technology, people, and processes working together

The technology for the connected business isn’t all that new. What is new is that, for the first time ever, all of this technology is working together. Business operations and processes aren’t just connected, they’re transformed. From isolated to orchestrated. From sporadic to seamless. These connections can help you reshape your business and achieve truly remarkable things.

Instead of reacting to change, here’s your chance to initiate it.

If you are at MWC, I invite you to dive deeper into the possibilities of the connected business by visiting the AT&T booth. Our experts can provide an even better picture of the transformative solutions AT&T is bringing to life.


The Networking Exchange Blog Team About NEB Team