With its power to accelerate the impact of disruptive technologies, cloud computing has become essential to the future of business. In fact, a recent Accenture study reveals that 80% of business executives look to cloud as a means of mitigating uncertainty, while 87% view cloud as a critical component for achieving sustainability goals to a moderate or great degree. But while momentum for cloud adoption continues to grow, only 20% of companies in Asia Pacific are true “Cloud Champions” that are able to truly reinvent their businesses by using cloud strategically.
To realise the full business value from their cloud initiatives, CEOs need to take the path less travelled when embarking on their cloud journeys: one that starts with the ambition to achieve business reinvention by leveraging cloud as the new foundation for the enterprise.
Taking the cloud path less travelled
Most companies start with the first cloud path – Migrate, and leverage cloud technologies such as infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) or software-as-a-service (SaaS) to enable more efficient business applications. Others choose the second path – Accelerate. This path involves companies investing in new capabilities such as cloud-based data, AI, and machine learning so that they can run their businesses more intelligently.
Currently, only a few companies take the most ambitious path – Grow and Innovate. It is this third path that drives growth and innovation, unconstrained by legacy products, infrastructure and ways of working. Companies keen on business reinvention start here, while also recognising the need to build scale with a strong technology backbone, talent and the right economic model.
CEOs leading their organisations toward this path can unlock the true power of cloud. This allows them to:
Create and launch brand-new products and services (i.e. build something different from the ground up).
Transform the economics of their functions outside of IT (i.e. marketing, sales, and customer service).
Only 35% of companies in the Asia Pacific region are leveraging the cloud technologies they adopted to develop new products and services ( Refer fig 1 below)
Fig 1 : Cloud adoption for strategic use.
Making cloud the future foundation of business
Using cloud to prepare for business reinvention is a subject that many CEOs still view as uncharted territory. Our recommendations to these CEOs are to:
Set a higher value bar: Recognise the potential of cloud to turn underutilised intangible assets (e.g., behavioral data driving customised offerings) into financial value for customers and the business and pay greater attention to the non-financial benefits that cloud provides.
Embrace change differently: Be ready to use cloud-led programs to rewire the enterprise operating model. This can involve a major workforce and culture shift, as well as changes in the IT landscape (e.g., systems, architecture).
Build one team: Develop a more cloud-specialised and diverse talent pool, enhance the hiring process and cultivate an environment where people’s Technology Quotient is nurtured.
Move forward responsibly: Embed responsible practices into every part of the organisation—from technology and product development to marketing, sales and customer service—while learning to leverage data at scale.
Now is the moment for truly visionary CEOs to embrace a future that is powered by cloud by embarking on a more ambitious cloud path, together with the rest of their C-suite.
"Cloud is the most disruptive and value-creating technology of our time—it is the foundation for the digital transformation that is driving profound changes in how businesses operate, compete and create value for all their stakeholders."
— Paul Daugherty, Group Chief Executive – Accenture Technology