What would you do in a downturn?

“Globally, many economists and CFOs believe we are heading towards another set of economic downturns,” Val Sribar, a Gartner senior vice president, said in the keynote. (Florida 21st Oct) “If they’re right…how would you respond?”…..Well the recommended response is to cut and innovate. But which #CIO would have the courage to do just that. Well in normal times its easy to cut spending and ride the ‘down-turn’ storm but these are not normal times.

Established enterprises are being challenged as never before by new players with access to the latest technologies and can give customers what they want, a personal responsive service. Just look at the Fintech arena. Established bank and insurance companies are holding their own for the moment but for how long. In fairness many have commenced their long journeys of digital transformation but what happens in a downturn and funds begin to dry up? What would you do as a #CIO #CEO?

Well the ‘cut costs and innovate’ mantra still holds true, its just how they are applied is slightly different. In these current challenging times it is necessary to embrace change at a greater pace, while placing a greater trust in the newer emerging technologies and in your own in-house teams to deliver. The latest technological innovations, driven by AI, ML and Cognitive Automation require less expert consultants to operate. They are also open systems which means less vendor lock-in and more choice. Api-driven connectivity is opening up a whole new world of business opportunity in the cloud.

The one trump card that established enterprises has to play is their data. Through many years of customer loyalty, personal information has been willingly shared. But in an ever changing enterprise landscape that is customer driven, loyalty comes with one caveat, it is time limited.