Making The Strongest Case Possible For Platform Migration

Joseph Msays

Driven partly by the optimistic economic outlook and partly by the increasing maturity of the platforms available in the marketplace today, more companies than ever are planning migrations to digital platforms. By 2020, it’s estimated that 60% of all enterprises will be in the process of implementing an organization-wide strategy.

If your company is among them, you’re probably already shaping a business case to justify the capital expenditures your migration will require. To maximize your chances of success, there are several key topics you’ll need to plan for, including:

  • Digital transformation initiatives
  • Future business models
  • Cutting-edge technologies

Building a new foundation for digital transformation

The business benefits of a technical platform migration are usually not enough on their own to justify the cost. The true value of platform migration comes from the fact that it serves as the core of an organization’s digital transformation efforts, helping them tackle the challenges of a changing business world.

By now, most organizations already have big ideas about how they’re going to approach digital transformation, but all those ideas aren’t worth much without the funding needed to put them into action. According to the Global Innovation 1000 report from Strategy+Business, average R&D intensity – a measurement indicating innovation spending as a percentage of total revenues – reached an all-time high of 4.5% in 2017, with many well-known companies spending significantly more than average. Clearly, many organizations have already recognized the growing importance of shifting more resources toward innovation.

Your business case should show how platform migration will help simplify and streamline your IT environment, including business processes, information flows, and infrastructure. Taking complexity out of your environment can help reduce operational expenses, freeing up new funding to dedicate to innovation. Reducing complexity also paves the way for you to implement new innovations quickly, while limiting disruption to ongoing processes.

Preparing for success with future business models

Many companies have a well-built and well-maintained ERP solution for today’s business, but can’t say for sure that they’re prepared for the future, when they’ll likely face threats from new digital entrants.

Quantifying the benefits of a present-day migration against future business models is easier said than done. However, it’s a challenge that must be overcome in order to build a compelling business case. To do so, companies must be able to define their future business model in concrete terms and understand how the new platform will flexibly support it.

One example of this is enterprise mobility. With a generation of young people who can’t remember a time before smartphones entered the workforce in large numbers, the need for enterprises to adopt a mobile strategy is clear.

However, enterprise mobility can be both a challenge and an opportunity. When adding enterprise mobility to their business plan, organizations must know the investment needed and accurately predict how the future benefits of reinventing work will make this investment worthwhile.

Embracing new technologies

To meet the business requirements of tomorrow, organizations must embrace transformative new solutions like blockchain, artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotic process automation, and cloud microservices. These new technologies will help them work across both structural and skills barriers.

It’s impossible to overstate the potential impact these new technologies could have on the business world, and the transformation is taking place right in front of our eyes. According to IDC, worldwide spending on cognitive and AI will reach US$57.6 billion by 2021, representing a compound annual growth rate of 50.1% over a five-year period.

Building a robust business case requires an organization to look beyond the immediate platform migration itself; they must also consider how these technologies will fit into the new platform. By doing so, organizations can feel confident that when the time comes, they’ll be fully prepared to capitalize on the massive opportunities these technologies present.

This post provides a few examples of the things you can’t afford to leave out of your business case. Working with a migration partner can help you gain the deep business and technical insights you need to make sure you don’t miss anything else.

If SAP S/4HANA is your platform of choice, IBM offers a number of tools to help you build a business case that quantifies and communicates the value it can offer. Request an SAP S/4HANA impact assessment today to get started.

IBM will be at SAPPHIRE NOW and ASUG Annual Conference June 5-7 in Orlando. Visit IBM at booth #612 and talk to IBM experts. Check out our event website to see what we’re doing at the event.

Also, visit our website to learn more about how IBM can help accelerate your migration to SAP S/4HANA.


Joseph Msays

About Joseph Msays

Joseph Msays is an experienced IBM global executive, currently serving as Vice President and Global Managing Partner for NextGen Enterprise Cloud Applications Center of Excellence. In this role, he is pioneering new ways of engaging CxOs in their digital reinvention agendas, and building and migrating new cloud-based business applications. Joseph has experience managing many IBM professional services units and large strategic systems integration and outsourcing relationships, and has lived and worked in virtually every major market across the globe.