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Modern organisations are driven to achieve more with less. They must offer improved customer relationships and experiences, retain and develop their people and deliver higher value to their stakeholders. They must also continually offer new ways of helping their customers and employees by offering access to simpler, faster and cheaper ways of working via multiple communication channels.
But many organisations do not yet have a clear Digital strategy or possess the experience, skills or IT environment to meet these new challenges or take advantage of the opportunities and ROI that Digital Transformation can offer. Put simply, Digital Transformation is the vehicle to achieve the accelerated pace of a modern organisation. But it has no standard playbook.
As a result, many organisations default to a tactical approach to technology change.
While this may appear to be more predictable and less risky, it invariably leads to a fragmented IT landscape, characterised by disconnected silos of data and duplicated systems that are complex to manage, difficult to change and expensive to run. This can also lead to dependence on an increasingly overburdened and demotivated workforce with limited modern technical skills that may eventually leave, taking business critical knowledge with them.
However, organisations that have successfully implemented a Digital strategy have been able to realise real value and a clear ROI enabling them to quickly deliver services, adapt to market changes and new threats and to achieve greater efficiencies than ever before.
6point6 offers a strategic approach to Digital Transformation. We can help you build a plan to realise your business goals through value-driven, measurable technology change. We understand how to design and plan sustainable architectures that enable change instead of frustrating it. We are also engineers and we know how to deliver, migrate, adopt, transform and industrialise new and existing technology in the context of your business as a whole.
"If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional, wait until you hire an amateur" - Red Adair
Embarking on a Digital Transformation journey will confirm that your organisation has skills, experience and knowledge gaps that you will need to fill in order to reach your desired business outcomes. But without the right vision and experience, it is easy to make the wrong strategic choices early on, which can quickly translate into wasted resources, time and money down the line.
Working with the right external advisors who have ‘seen the movie before’ and are able to provide a fresh, objective perspective to your situation is essential to mitigate these risks and quickly set you on the path to success. But finding the right advisor is no easy task.
6point6 acts as a trusted partner to enhance your leadership team and to help guide you along the way. We have a successful record in providing highly skilled and experienced consultants to enhance our clients’ own ability to design and implement digital and technology strategy. We offer a range of services, such as board-level or ‘Head-of’ advisory, interim technology leadership, strategy, business case production, procurement and supplier and delivery management.
"Those who are unaware of history are destined to repeat it" - George Santayana
Increasingly businesses are formulating Digital Strategies that articulate their aspirations for business change through the application of new technologies. These plans generally originate from the CEO (or an immediate delegate such as a Chief Digital Officer) whose primary concern is direction setting over execution and delivery.
But in large organisations with significant and ageing IT estates, delivering meaningful and measurable change whilst keeping existing business critical systems and BAU operations stable is acutely challenging.
With the right experience, planning, prioritisation and strategic vision, successful digital organisations can shape an evolutionary path that both extends the life of existing ‘legacy’ IT, whilst embracing innovation. It is also essential to involve the relevant “consumers” of these new platforms and services early to make sure what is planned to be delivered will fully meet all user needs.
6point6 specialises in acting as your business’s technology strategist to complement and enable your Digital Strategy goals. Technology strategy is the creation of a detailed and comprehensive understanding of your business’s existing technology assets and data, which informs both the vision of what needs to change (and what doesn’t) as well as the roadmap to get there.
"Architecture is the reaching out for the truth" - Louis Kahn
All technology is underpinned by architecture, which is the logical blueprint from which it was created. Architecture provides an enduring understanding of your IT systems and data and provides a platform for responsible innovation. This in turn lowers risk by providing principles and standards as well as escalation, governance and a control and justification mechanism for change.
But in today’s fast paced digital and agile environment, IT architecture is often left to one side in favour of engineering-led innovation, which while effective in the short term, can lead to rapid accumulation of technical debt and amplified risk. This is made worse if key Technical staff decide to leave the organisation.
Modern software architecture must move away from the ‘ivory tower’ image of the past and become a guide rail for business agility. Applied correctly it can offer a detailed picture of your technology estate and provide an up-to-date catalogue of knowledge and intellectual property that enables change while preventing technology proliferation.
6point6 has a strong track record of IT architecture and we have successfully designed systems for central government departments, banks, media companies, telcos and more. We deliver architecture that is created to last but is able to adapt. We help organisations to blend architecture with agile delivery, accommodating the need for rapid change whilst ensuring knowledge is not lost.
"Engineering without imagination sinks to a trade" - Herbert Hoover
Modern digital organisations must be able to adapt quickly and IT departments are now expected to deliver change within days or weeks rather than months or years. However, software is no longer delivered in time-bound Projects but rather as Products or Outcomes” that are incremental and change constantly based on the evolving vision and goals, informed by early feedback harvested from real users. This approach is a mindset shift for many organisations and demands mastery of a wide range of engineering and delivery techniques that deliver results rapidly while ensuring high-levels of quality, performance and security.
But many organisations either still view IT as a non-core service that can be outsourced and treated as a commodity or are unable to attract and hire the required skills in-house quickly enough to meet this new wave of demand and agile delivery approach. Increasingly this is not the case as monolithic legacy IT is modernised using current generation tools and techniques, such as cloud hosting and microservice architectures. along with agile and continuous delivery and feedback loops from analytics-based live and lab based user testing.
This requires a technology delivery capability that is both highly attuned to the needs of the business and has the skills and experience necessary to deliver regular and rapid change without introducing risk to business as usual.
6point6 software engineers are highly experienced in providing predictable, repeatable and reliable delivery of software in a wide variety of contexts across industry sectors using a multitude of tools and techniques, always tailored to the problem at hand.
"The most powerful tool we have as developers is automation" - Scott Hanselman
Successful Digital organisations are able to balance seemingly opposing forces of stability, rapid improvement and risk reduction. Building on the success of agile methodology and continuous delivery, most organisations are now expecting their development teams to become cross-functional and competent across the complete development and delivery process from writing code through testing, deployment and monitoring. These cross-functional teams can leverage improvements such as improved deployment rate, fewer failures, quick recovery and features being delivered to market faster by using new tools and cloud technologies in their DevOps toolchain armoury.
But this journey towards a fully integrated DevOps culture requires both business commitment and senior level sponsorship and no two journeys to a DevOps culture are ever identical. The Business and technical teams need to redraw the traditional boundaries between business, operations, development and testing. This can often create challenges as typically this evolution directly contradicts existing processes which are designed to ensure consistency but also resist change.
Organisations that successfully implement DevOps are rewarded with empowered teams, which bring fully supported products online quickly and react quickly to business demand. Processes that previously provided stability and reduced risks have been upgraded with a further emphasis on automation, repeatability and continuous integration.
No two journeys to a DevOps culture are ever identical. 6point6 has a history of helping Organisations successfully navigate this process. With a broad knowledge of DevOps tools and experience to draw on, we can help create a bespoke, optimised DevOps solution for your organisation.