Smart Solutions For Complex Challenges: Using Software Intelligence To Fuel Digital Transformation

Software Intelligence Provides the capability of integrating technologies to adapt and optimise software systems to evolve and advance with time.

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Software intelligence

Today, software is pervasive and is in our lives without our realizing how much it’s influencing the way we live. The world is living on software that’s becoming increasingly complex, opaque, dangerous, and difficult to master. A decade ago, it was predicted that software would eat the world. Today, software is not only eating the world but is eating itself. Even as software grows in importance, its code is becoming less and less visible, less tangible, and less understood. Organisations are undergoing significant adjustments to remain competitive and relevant in the rapidly evolving digital economy. 

During this CIO Round Table, Sridhar Kalyan, MD, CAST said ‘‘Transformation is difficult’’. Over time, customization has actually led to more complexity and has also become a lot more expensive as time goes by. 70% of IT professionals believe that legacy applications are a major barrier to achieving digital transformation, and companies spend 20% of their IT budgets on maintaining legacy applications, which takes people away from strategic projects. Software Intelligence Provides the capability of integrating technologies to adapt and optimise software systems to evolve and advance with time.

Organizations must be creative, automated, and process-optimized to integrate cutting-edge software solutions. Organizations must now overcome previously unheard-of obstacles to achieve successful digital transformations. Managing complicated and interrelated legacy software might impede modernization efforts and make maintenance difficult. According to a research study that included 800 senior IT decision-makers from multinational corporations, 80% of the respondents thought that their company's long-term growth would suffer if it did not modernize its IT infrastructure and applications. Globally, millions of businesses rely on core applications for their fundamental business operations.

Business vs. Digital Transformation

Shankar Rao, Chief Information Officer and Chief Digital Officer, Bosch India talked about being rational in deciding to upgrade software. It should be carefully considered whether changing the application to new-age technology is necessary or can be retired. It is important to decide which practices will gain the most from this coordinated effort. He further highlighted the democratizing of technology using low-code or no-code platforms. Talking about the challenges, he said, “How can we put in place the required guard rails for citizen developers, and implement a proper governance framework to ensure adherence to security guidelines, architecture framework, and design principles”.

Prasad Chalasani, Global IT Solution Optimization & Reliability Manager, Caterpillar talked about efficiently integrating systems by reducing the number of systems, partnership with vendors, and strong governance across the organisation. He laid the importance of an IT mindset to cope with continuous modernisation saying, “Mind has to work like a sprinter and body should work like marathon and soul should work institution builder”.

A systematic strategy is needed to manage the limited resources available during the early stages of software intelligence startups in order to prioritize and maximize the effect of work.

Sankaran Kaliappan, Chief Technology Officer at Stealth emphasised building clear ambitions core to the business and drawing solutions to problems. Skilled staff in developing the ecosystem encourages teams to experiment. He added, “Innovations can happen with experiments amidst continuously developing ecosystem”. 

Software integrations play a crucial role in modern businesses by facilitating seamless communication between different applications. This, in turn, enables business leaders to access relevant insights and data in real time, empowering them to make informed decisions for the organization. “Flexibility and efficiency are the core components that how the software or tech team are involved or should be involved,” says, Amrish Jain, CIO at Tally Solutions. Enabling businesses to experiment requires a culture of experimentation and a willingness to adopt innovative solutions before they become outdated. Defining and documenting processes frequently starts out quite well, but over time, the documentation becomes meaningless. He further added, Quicker, faster, and more efficient deployment are keywords for the operation,” 

Sanjay Singh, Head- Devsecops at Games 24X7 delved into the myriad of challenges associated with handling intricate software along with architectural complexities, and how these challenges can hinder the efficiency of project delivery. In addition, he emphasized that cultivating enhanced predictability within the delivery pipeline holds the key to streamlining the pace of project completion.

Mrinal Chatterjee, Vice President, Engineering Global Marketplace & Walmart Fulfilment Service US Omni Tech at Walmart Global Tech described how the advancement and accessibility of technology is changing the expectations of our customers, members, associates, partners, and businesses. Covid taught us that these changes can happen unplanned and at a fast pace. As technology leaders, we need to stay ahead of these transformations by reducing and managing platform complexities. He further said, “We must build technologies that allow us to adapt and continue to create delightful experiences for our customers and members as their expectations keep evolving.

Managing Cloud Structure

Companies choose cloud migration to migrate data, apps, digital assets, or other business pieces to a cloud computing environment. Given that cloud computing is on course to be the biggest upheaval of all, particularly in terms of how IT develops and operates. Before embarking on a cloud journey, one must be aware of the hidden cost, level of security, and business demand. Satish Panchapakesan, Senior Vice President & CIO at Arvind Fashions Limited talked about the key considerations on the Cloud journey.  “Cloud must be an integral part of an enterprise strategy - product, consumer, or service”. He further said, “One needs to invest and harness data on Cloud and quantify the value in overall strategy”. In Apparel, for instance, data will enable a shift towards use cases like personalized clothing that will drive consumer demand by transforming product experience using Gen AI tools.

Managed services from cloud providers help you save operating costs by providing a dynamic and scalable environment. Organizations can allocate greater resources to innovation, which requires dynamic provisioning and de-provisioning of compute resources.  He also highlighted the challenges of a multi-cloud environment and the importance of a multi-cloud strategy for staying competitive.

Shankar Rao also talked about the challenges to Hyperscalers arising out of the recent announcement from MCA (Ministry of Corporate Affairs) detailing the amendment to the IT Companies Act, 2022 which mandates that corporates now need to keep a daily back-up of book of accounts data in servers physically located in India.

Prasad Chalasani, Global IT Solutions and Reliability Manager, Caterpillar highlighted the importance of an accounting mindset while looking at the Cloud strategy. The multi-cloud strategy should always be upfront. Cloud is becoming important for business to survive. Each of the cloud vendor providers is trying to play their niche in certain spaces. He further said, “We need to understand what we are renting and what we are getting out of it”.

You must take pricing, functionality, and compatibility into account while selecting the ideal tool. Modern application frameworks enable us to scale as we grow. Scale mindset becomes a problem when you decide to implement everything. Doing things that are not needed might become another type of debt, says Sankaran.

Cloud provides flexibility as users can access cloud services and data with ease from anywhere. This aids in the digital transformation process, improves customer experience, and equips staff with cutting-edge, adaptable technologies. “If you have a well-trained team, cloud costs are no brainer to handle,” says, Amrish Jain.

Cloud is a necessity for all businesses. It provides an opportunity to rethink application architecture, build resilience and handle a surge in demand. In addition, it allows for rapid experimentation. It is important for enterprises to decide on their cloud strategy. For example, if the strategy is multi cloud then building a layer of infrastructure for interoperability will enable application developers to focus on application and platform development, says Mrinal Chatterjee.

Toward knowledge preservation

Knowledge management ensures that crucial knowledge is recorded and goes to the right people rather than becoming lost in a graveyard of unused resources. Software systems are constantly expanding in size and complexity; thus, it is important to give more priority to the components and stages of development where knowledge retention is most crucial. A software system's capacity to retain knowledge inside an organisation is essential for assuring the program's lifetime, maintainability, and effective administration.

Tools having inbuilt knowledge are used for retention purposes whereas the cloud helps in retrievability to a great extent. Microservices are considered for later use in terms of reusability and retrievability. Tools and documentation are two major parts of retaining documents. Proper and updated documentation is the key to ease the process and make it workable.  

Modernisation Vs Maintenance

A key component of digital transformation is cloud computing, which provides the innovation, scalability, and agility needed to modernise business processes, increase efficiency, and maintain competitiveness in a quickly changing digital environment. Pay-as-you-go models are used by cloud services, which eliminates the need for substantial upfront capital expenditures. This enables businesses to better manage their spending, minimise overprovisioning, and match expenses to utilisation. 

Satish Kumar Subbiah, President at Landmark Group explained When it comes to moving to the cloud, it’s a no-brainer. Cloud infrastructure is backed by the best technology organizations in the world and it’s futile to manage them on-premise with a limited in-house team. You just need to bite the bullet and get there, lift & shift if you have monolithic applications. And eventually, move to an architecture that horizontally scales if you have workloads that wax and wane such as with eCommerce organizations that have festive sales.

Amit Verma, Chief Technology Officer at Practo talked about both positive and negative consequences of moving to the cloud. It can be underutilized if not addressed on time. He further said, “Going to the cloud is important but not without first building the expertise. Building an in-house strategy will boost confidence in the decision with respect to cost, security, and identity management”.

Cloud computing systems provide reliable options for managing and storing data. Large datasets may be analysed using cloud-based analytics tools, allowing for data-driven decision-making. “Cloud is a mindset impacting not just engineering but finance and salespersons as well. Cloud health analysis will help from a cost and security perspective”, says Neeraj Chauhan, CIO at PayU.

Organisations may modernise without totally replacing their IT stack by integrating cloud-based solutions with their current legacy systems. According to Goldman Sachs Research, AI will influence the world economy and society, and it will take time to play out. There are clear signs that the effects could be profound. Nikhil Paul, Chief Technology, and Information Officer at 6D Technologies talked about the advantages the cloud brings to scale the business. Regulations play a key role in designing the modern architecture of applications. He added, “It is important to define your strategy to define the kind of products and application and then decide what should be on the cloud and What should not be”.

Manuj Desai, Global chief information officer at Sterlite Technologies Limited emphasised building a skilful internal system to manage the cloud. He further added,” If you can measure it, you can manage it. Monitoring it on a regular basis can get you data to make decisions accordingly”. Cloud systems give businesses the ability to scale their resources up or down as needed, allowing them to respond to changes in demand and company expansion. New apps and services may be quickly deployed because of this scalability.

Organisations may appropriately prioritize projects that will produce the most business value with the least amount of risk by concentrating on business needs and the cost of ownership. The demands of contemporary enterprises are varied. Integrated software solutions are becoming more prevalent in the industry. In order to improve user experience, productivity, and overall system efficiency, seamless integration aims to guarantee that data, processes, and capabilities may move easily across various components of a software ecosystem.

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