Even though digital information is evolving at a rapid pace, the world is still document-centric.
Documents, whether created by a human or generated by a machine, underpin every operation, communication exchange and innovation in the Intelligent and Connected Enterprise. What is changing, however, is how they are created, their levels of complexity and their collaborative nature.
Consider all the business documents that need to be managed, from invoices, payments, contracts, waybills, orders, etc., along with their differing formats: video, voice, JPGs, smartphone images, PDFs and more. We have spent 20 years understanding all these formats and how to break them down effectively into metadata and other component parts.
Information Inside the Enterprise is Extensive
The dynamics surrounding many documents are changing, impacted by their context, whether it is the IoT, AI, AutoCAD or XML. Since the world is document-centric, all the business classes of documents remain consistent. Even though the lifecycle of a contract or a transaction has changed considerably, in many cases, data is captured in the form of a document.
The majority of business information relates to employees, customers, suppliers, assets and products. But, for this information to provide business value, the Intelligent and Connected Enterprise must be able to engage with it in meaningful ways to uncover insights.
To help businesses connect with their information and unlock its potential, regardless of whether it resides behind the firewall or in the cloud, we are continually developing information-based enterprise applications. These include departmental applications like accounts payable, case management and invoice management, industry-specific applications like claims processing and regulated documents, as well as active applications for supply chains.
These applications give the Intelligent and Connected Enterprise real-time access to information that has been enriched with analytics and AI. With the right intelligence-infused information, users can make informed decisions. That same information can also be used to identify new opportunities, such as ways to optimize processes, improve products or services or monetize data.
To rise to the challenges of a digital economy, organizations must digitize their business processes. Ideally, organizations should digitize core business processes from end-to-end, in their entirety.
When processes and data are fully integrated, Analytics and AI can be applied to add value across the enterprise.
Analytics will be a mainstay in organizations of the future. Insights based on analyzing information empowers businesses to act on this information and automate their decision-making processes. Applying advanced analytics provides a better understanding of transactions and interactions and can help improve outcomes.
Investing in the necessary infrastructure will help organizations capitalize on their information. This requires creating data lakes rather than storing information in data warehouses. Data lakes include information from every connected device and all of this information (both structured and unstructured) can be remotely connected to an IoT platform. Organizations can leverage this information in different ways to help drive IoT-enabled processes and greater visibility.
It is unsustainable for an organization to retain vast amounts of data from every connected device over a long period of time. By deploying edge analytics (analytics conducted at the device or network point level) aligned to information governance policies, data with long-term strategic value can be identified.
To unlock the power of its information, the Intelligent and Connected Enterprise will plug into its customers’ digital ecosystems. It will integrate technologies that enhance automation (like machine-to-machine communications, the IoT, AI and analytics) with legacy IT infrastructure, standardize data across systems and create dynamic and flexible processes to support new technologies and devices.
In all its formats, information beats at the heart of business. It drives digital transformation and maximizing its value will be the key differentiator for the Intelligent and Connected Enterprise. Yet, despite the benefits that access to great amounts of data offers, concerns around security are ever present. Security must be Job 1 and this is the topic of my next blog in this series.