Business Technology & Digital Transformation Strategies

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Technology Strategy & Implementation Insights

Boost business success via insights on emerging trends in digital transformation and IT strategy; practical frameworks you can apply; and guidance from the world’s experts in leadership, IaaS, investment prioritization, operational excellence, sustainable innovation, change management, enterprise agility, and applying emerging technologies.

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Figure 1 — Sample digital transformation milestones.
Advisor

Make the Right Strategic Choices for Digital Transformation

by Borys Stokalski, by Bogumil Kaminski

Digital transformation is a journey of creating and combining specific business capabilities so that they give organizations a competitive advantage in the digital excellence domains in a way that reflects their chosen mix of strategic options. This journey is shaped also by the availability of critical resources — data, analytical skills, technology proficiency. It is very often seriously affected by the state of business and IT architecture, the style of integration, and data quality. It seems wise to focus on domains of excellence where the resources are available or can be relatively easily developed or acquired.


Executive Update

Exploring Blockchain Use Cases

by Peter Kaminski

In this Executive Update, we will take a brief tour of both the strengths and weaknesses of blockchain technology in the abstract, working toward a framework for thinking about its other potential uses. It’s likely that the future will see many and varied uses for blockchain. Understanding how and when to take advantage of the technology will help your business advance into the future more effectively.


David Wortley
Advisor

Business Opportunities from Emerging, Disruptive “Life Events” Technologies

by David Wortley

Developments in the technologies we use to share and recall life events are likely to create an explosion of business opportunities within the next one to three years.


Robert Charette
Advisor

Defining IT Failure Down

by Robert Charette

If we don’t as an IT community start to stop excusing IT failure — or, worse, normalizing it as a success in disguise — then as IT becomes even more embedded into our daily lives with the Internet of Things, we'd better get used to living with very mediocre systems. And we had better not complain when the public decides that the reputations tech workers deserve are lower than those of politicians.


Whynde Kuehn
Executive Update

Business Architecture: Critical for Digital Transformation

by Whynde Kuehn

Some perceive that business architecture and enterprise architecture do not have a place in digital transformation. These perceptions are typically based on misconceptions, including that the business and technology environment changes too fast for architecture to play a role or that architecture slows or constrains the process of transformation. However, when successfully deployed and business value-focused, a business architecture practice is a critical enabler for digital transformation.


Curt Hall
Webinar

The Future of Blockchain

by Curt Hall

Discover what organizations are doing — or planning to do — with blockchain in this webinar presenting Cutter Consortium's research findings.


Bhuvan Unhelkar
Advisor

Wrap Your Head Around the 3 Types of Contemporary Innovation

by Bhuvan Unhelkar, by Alok Sharma

Since the business context is continuously changing, an organization’s efforts to innovate cannot be based on rigidly defined goals; instead, they must be driven by a set of guidelines for activities that can produce business value.


Figure 4b — Rule concision: the worst case.
Article

Refining Reconciliation: A Machine Learning Approach to the Financial Industry’s Toughest Task

by Zhuo Li, by Jianling Sun

In this article, we examine different machine learning mechanisms and propose a maximally specific con­junctive approach to fitting massive data sets in the real world of reconciliation. Furthermore, we provide a balanced solution to address the high skewness in reconciliation data sets.


Philip O'Reilly
Article

Beyond Fintech: New Frontiers — Opening Statement

by Philip OReilly

This issue focuses on key topics of interest for financial services organizations, namely equity crowdfunding, legacy systems migration, robo-advisors, test outsourcing, and refining the reconciliation process.


Bhardwaj Velamakanni
Advisor

Implementing Design Thinking in Agile

by Bhardwaj Velamakanni

This Advisor presents an overview of improving Agile techniques and practices by using design thinking within the Agile space and describes three techniques from design thinking methodologies that tend to yield benefits to Agile practitioners.


Gustav Toppenberg
Executive Update

Data’s Story: An Enterprise Asset in the Digital Backbone

by Gustav Toppenberg

The existence of a digital backbone in an organization means that anyone aspiring and planning to transform different parts of the enterprise can leverage the digital backbone in a consistent and sustainable way, ensuring that each transformation effort connects and leverages a common platform. Digital transformation leaders are starting to realize that a powerful digital services backbone to facilitate rapid innovation and responsiveness is key to successfully executing on a digital strategy.


Effort score and priority rank for requirements in our sample project.
Executive Summary

Can We Measure Agile Performance with an Evolving Scope? An EVM Framework (Executive Summary)

by Alexandre Rodrigues

Can a method like EVM, developed to control projects with well-defined objectives, be applied to control product development initiatives that evolve continuously toward a “moving target”? In an Agile environment, we are faced with the dynamic evolution of a finite boundary of integrated scope, cost, time, and resources; this finiteness — essential for business management and decisions — is the cradle for project management techniques, tools, methods, and frameworks. The EVM method was first developed to help with managing complex R&D projects mostly characterized by an unstable, volatile, and evolving scope. It is therefore no surprise that EVM applies to Agile projects.


Article

The Frontier of Fintech Innovation — Opening Statement

by Philip OReilly

It’s a pleasure for me to introduce the first of two special issues of Cutter Business Technology Journal (CBTJ) showcasing the thought leadership and cutting-edge research and development (R&D) being done in State Street Corporation’s Advanced Technology Centres in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) and Asia Pacific (APAC), in partnership with University College Cork (UCC) and Zhejiang University (ZJU), respectively. The articles in this issue represent a small sample of the output from the R&D undertaken in these centers, which combine academic excellence with real industry impact.


Executive Update

Business Architecture’s Role in Crisis, Risk, and Compliance Management

by William Ulrich

Every business must deal with crisis, risk, and compliance challenges. Teams chartered with addressing these challenges are often split across business units and regions, which fragments crisis, risk, and compliance management efforts. Business unit silos and related complexities obscure ecosystem transparency, which in turn constrain an organization’s ability to identify risks, assure compliance, and prevent and disarm crises. Business architecture delivers business ecosystem transparency as a basis for improving a business’s ability to collectively address challenges related to crisis, risk, and compliance. 


Curt Hall
Advisor

Building New Business Models with Blockchain

by Curt Hall

Organizations are using blockchain to create new business models — exploiting its capabilities for optimizing contract management, financial transaction management, and identity management.


Nine Policy Recommendations for Managing Technical Debt
Executive Update

Managing Technical Debt: Nine Policy Recommendations

by Rick Brenner

For technology-dependent products, companies, institutions, and even societies, sustainability depends on learning how to manage technical debt. Like most transformations, incorporating new practices into our organizations will likely be an iterative process. We already recognize the problem, and researchers are making progress, albeit mostly on technical issues. This Executive Update proposes a policy-centered approach to the problem. It begins with a principle that can serve as a guide for constructing technical debt management policy, and then shows how to apply that principle to develop nine recommendations that enable organizations to manage technical debt effectively.


Bhardwaj Velamakanni
Advisor

Emerging Agile Anti-Patterns

by Bhardwaj Velamakanni

Agile methodologies, however popular they are, bring their own sets of “smells” and anti-patterns to the table, sometimes causing irreparable damage to the team. While the sources of these smells are many, one of the primary culprits is the mindset that treats Agile as “yet another methodology,” totally ignoring the cultural aspect. This article throws light on some of the prominent smells that are emerging of late in the Agile world.


Jens Coldewey
Advisor

Middle Management in Flux

by Jens Coldewey

If you start changing an organization toward an Agile mindset, there’s no real end. Agile is about creating an organization of continuous learning and the transformation is done when there is nothing new to learn, which will probably be never. This puts an enormous challenge on middle management.


Article

Business Opportunities in the New Digital Age — Opening Statement

by San Murugesan

The articles in this issue present perspectives and ideas on business transformation in the digital age. We hope they will inspire and encourage you to visualize the likely future of business in your domain and to explore the opportunities it presents. Finally, we hope their insights will help you identify suitable transformation strategies and plans and, if needed, choose viable collaboration models for partnering with startups and other firms in your digital business efforts.


Advisor

Unlocking Value from Digital Initiatives

by Joe Peppard, by John Thorp

Beyond buzzwords, what we are seeing is a seismic shift in the role of technology in organizations. Technology is more and more embedded in everything we do as we move into an increasingly hyper-connected digital world, a world in which technology is driving significant social, organizational, and industry change.


Digital Data Steams impact bottom line
Webinar

Improve Customer Experience — Leverage Your Digital Data Streams

by Federico Pigni, by Gabriele Piccoli

In this on-demand webinar, you'll discover the strategic and tactical opportunities made possible by Digital Data Streams and the opportunities for improved customer experience made possible by DDS.


Lou Mazzucchelli
Advisor

Why Are They Twittering? A Modest Proposal

by Lou Mazzucchelli

At the Cutter Digital Transformation & Innovation Bootcamp, Cutter Fellow and Harvard Business School Professor Karim Lakhani talked about digitally-driven disruption of traditional business models for value creation and capture, discussing platform models like Facebook and Twitter. To date, Twitter has clearly done a good job “creating value.” But unlike Facebook, it continues to struggle with the capture part of the equation.


social collaboration
Executive Update

Seven Ways to Gamify Social Collaboration

by Phaedra Boinodiris

Social collaboration is not about technology. It’s about connecting people, and it’s changing the way business is being conducted. Similarly, gamification is not about games. It’s about motivating the per­sonal and professional behaviors that drive business value. Together, social collaboration and gamifi­cation help companies reap great benefits — among them, the ability to deepen customer relationships, drive operational efficiencies, and optimize their workforce. 


Figure 1 — Tracing a roadmap to projects.
Advisor

Using Roadmaps Strategically

by Roger Evernden

Roadmaps have two key functions in strategy planning. The first is to outline planned architectural changes that will deliver the required strategies; the second is to outline alternative ways to achieve the same results.


Article

Technology Trends, Predictions, and Reflections 2017: Opening Statement

by Cutter Team

Just as recent global events have given us reason to pause and reflect, the pace of technology emergence and disruption is proving to be a source of inspiration and uncertainty. Transitioning to a digital world is front-of-mind for many business executives, yet finding the right path is an ongoing challenge. So we asked Cutter’s team of experts for their insights on some of the technologies, trends, and strategies that will be relevant in 2017 and beyond. In typical Cutter Business Technology Journal fashion, our call produced a wide range of opinions and reflections worthy of consideration as you chart your business technology journey for the new year.


Article

AGI: A Threat, an Opportunity, or an Inevitable Unknown for 2017?

by Alexandre Rodrigues

Artificial general intelligence (AGI) is currently emerging as an area where recent developments are likely to have a major impact on the way organizations do business, societies organize themselves, and even on how we address values and ethics.

The fact is that AGI already exists in our daily life. A common example is the GPS systems present in many new cars manufactured today; and let’s not forget the drones being used to deliver pizzas and cars that drive themselves. While automatic pilots have been used in commercial planes for quite some time, what AGI is about to offer to general business and human activity is well beyond what most of us have seen so far.


Article

The Tech-Driven Tech Backlash

by Carl Pritchard

2017 is going to be a year of strange winners, and perhaps the strangest of all will be a giant leap away from technology and back to solutions that don’t rely on 24/7 connectivity. With the onslaught of major hacks and Facebook embarrassment, the antitech crowd may have its best year in decades. 


Article

Rapid Technology Innovation in Blockchain: Should You Be on the Front Lines?

by Nate OFarrell

One of the most prevalent blockchains in the world, Ethereum, is poised to switch from a proof-of-work (POW) algorithm to a proof-of-stake (POS) algorithm, likely in 2017, with the release of the Casper codebase. Why does this matter? Because blockchain technology is becoming increasingly relevant and prevalent in businesses across the globe. It holds great potential to disrupt how businesses perform basic transactions, from payments, to programmable, self-executing contracts, to identity verification.