Making the most of digital disruption

Forrester’s Digital Disruption Conference kicked off today in Orlando, Florida and it couldn’t have come at a better time for where the typical business sits today.

There’s a storm brewing and the components of disruption are big data, analytics, cloud, social and mobile. Companies are still trying to sort out these pieces, but the real challenge is in how they come together as a broader theme of digital disruption.

The C-level of most companies is going to struggle to bring so many components together smoothly while maintaining existing business systems. Few will be able to build from the ground up, but everyone needs to emerge very soon with information technology that looks much different from today.

Fortunes will be made or lost on how well and quickly this is done.

The scenario

Forrester’s VP and Principal Analyst Bobby Cameron summed up the change nicely as a CIO’s perfect storm with the following five statements:

  • The customer is in charge
  • Services eclipse products
  • Users provision their own business capabilities
  • Change moves to systems of engagement, not transaction
  • The datacenter’s core skill becomes business, not technology

Each of these, like the technologies that are changing everything, is significant enough by itself but is daunting in combination. There needs to be a platform for change and there needs to be a new way of viewing the role of information technology.

The solution

Before we all hyperventilate from excitement and fear, there are ways to get through this. Part of solving this problem is simple organizational ‘blocking and tackling’. As always, it will be focused on people, process and technology:

  • People who understand the change will rise or find the organizations that serve their vision
  • Companies that have a process for change will have an enormous head start
  • Architectures that allow quick adaptation of new technology will get to the future faster

I’m looking forward to the next two days of Forrester’s vision of digital disruption. As always, we’ll let you know how it goes.


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Categories: Disruption

Author:Chris Taylor

Reimagining the way work is done through big data, analytics, and event processing. There's no end to what we can change and improve. I wear myself out...

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3 Comments on “Making the most of digital disruption”

  1. Ron Webb
    October 18, 2012 at 9:06 am #


    Isn’t there another option for the big players in the industries going through major disruption? Just like we say with the first move into business using the Web, might they just muddle through with their old way of business (first do no harm) until there is a little more certainity in how the “new way” will generate value for their market, then buy the company or companies that have figured it out and have the more flexible people, process, and technology?

    What are your thoughts?

  2. October 18, 2012 at 9:12 am #

    Yes and no. With the speed of change, muddling along won’t work so well if your competitor is leaping ahead, as is happening in retail as we speak. From my perspective, the certainty is here.


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