Thursday, October 02, 2014

Didier Bonnet's Capgemini Keynote at Oracle OpenWorld 2014

I had enough time at Oracle OpenWorld 2014 to attend Dr. Didier Bonnet's keynote on leading digital transformation.  His book Leading Digital is destined for every tech executive's shelf because it has enough concepts from the Capgemini pedigree to impress their office visitors.  The Oracle executive who introduced him looked really stiff, with his fingers locked in front of himself.  I watch a lot of top executives present at big conferences and they are impressive sometimes.  My own impressions follow.

Dr. Bonnet believes we can codify the DNA of successful companies in a 2x2 matrix.  Consultants from Capgemini and other global shops have certainly codified the 2x2 matrix formula for successfully presenting concepts.  Get ready for the ultimate 2x2 matrix comparing digital capability to leadership capability, with "Digital Masters" excelling at both.  Companies achieving digital mastery don't cluelessly experiment with tech like "Fashionistas" or transform in narrow ways like "Conservatives."  No sir-ee, bub.  If you want your company to be a Digital Master, you can take the expensive route of hiring consultants to show you a 2x2 matrix.  Alternatively, you can wait until Leading Digital comes to your local public library and see this 2x2 matrix yourself for free.

I want to explore the metrics consultants use to evaluate revenue generation efficiency.  It sometimes appears connected to headcount (i.e., revenue per employee) but that can't be the only KPI.  Executives executing a digital transformation need a balanced scorecard of revenue efficiency measures per employee, product line, market segment, asset count (trucks, railcar, store, hotel, whatever).  They also need traditional financial metrics from Cloudonomics.

The customer experience (CX) attracts customer data that becomes Big Data when amalgamated with credit history, geolocation, seasonality, and other things external to one purchase decision.  Big Data is the foundation of every automated and optimized process that's about to transform every sector.  The cloud services price war between Oracle and its biggest competitors will attract every enterprise into the cloud and force them to find paths to digital mastery.

Digital adoption no longer requires either/or choices between fully automated routine processes and human empowerment that allows daily decisions.  I do not understand why Dr. Bonnet limited his discussion of archetypes to five discrete choices.  There's no reason why a company can't be flexible enough to adapt them all to a business model.

I agree with Dr. Bonnet that true transformation demands strong top-down vision and leadership.  The C-suites should remember what I said above about KPIs.  The KPIs determine whether product lines are meeting the right milestones.  The CKO can help by reviewing the DIKW pyramid and evaluating whether the transformation project makes the upward flow of data more efficient.  The traditional waterfall transformation process may be less successful than an iterative process with beta experiments and A/B tests.

The other senior Oracle executive who spoke after Dr. Bonnet related some product updates.  Oracle is making big commitments to unstructured data, visualization, and in-memory tech.  The Hadoop "data lake" is some sort of unstructured source where Big Data flows out.  The BI systems increasingly use visual analytics for our post-literate culture.  I suppose the next step is gamifying the results to incentivize non-IT managers to use the full range of analytic suite tools in their workflows.

I was impressed with the demonstrated visualization tools available at Oracle Cloud.  Machine learning helps pick the appropriate format for each data set, and visualization tools enable APIs that enable drag n' drop mobile apps.  Any domain user can create "data mashups" from mixes of in-house Excel models and Big Data feeds with no coding needed.

Enterprise BI systems can even track external social media feeds for a contact.  I presume this works for contacts loaded into both CRM prospect pipelines and HR recruiting pipelines.  Oh BTW, Oracle and other leading enterprises insist that HR is now human capital management (HCM).  This is the ultimate in know-your-customer behavior.  I've told people that any skilled professional who does not have a social media footprint will soon be invisible in the workforce because they will have difficulty quantifying their economic value.  Individuals need as much digital transformation as enterprises.