Robotic process automation (RPA) and cognitive automation (CA) tools are getting a lot of attention. But, as reported by Mary Lacity and Leslie Willcocks in their new report, Smart Service Automation: Benefits, Cases, and Lessons, potential adopters of these new types of service automation tools remain skeptical about the claims surrounding their promised business value. These potential adopters are still not sure why an organization would move to service automation, what they’d achieve if they were to do it, and what are the best practices. To answer these questions, Lacity and Willcocks conducted two surveys of 143 outsourcing professionals and interviewed 48 people, including service automation adopters, providers, and advisors. From the interviews, they identified 20 adoption journeys. The 20 Read more
Guidance for optimizing your IT investments, avoiding IT strategies that fail to support your business objectives, and leveraging IT for competitive advantage.
Cutter Consortium has been conducting a survey to gain insight into how organizations are adopting — or planning to adopt — blockchain technology. We are also looking to identify important issues organizations are encountering (or foresee encountering) in their blockchain efforts. In addition to analyzing the data, Cutter Senior Consultant Curt Hall has been conducting phone interviews with leaders and practitioners from different organizations who are implementing or working to implement blockchain applications. Their opinions and recommendations on using the technology add depth and richness to Curt’s analysis. Curt will be presenting his findings in a series of Executive Updates over the next couple of months. Hall’s first Executive Update, published last week, examined the initial survey Read more
There’s no denying the disruption resulting from new business models enabled by digital technologies. From Uber turning the taxi industry on its head, to Facebook/Venmo blindsiding the banking industry by becoming a player in funds transfer, both organizations and entire industries are having to rethink value — how they create it and how they capture it. If you’ve been involved in transforming your company’s business model, or creating an entirely new business model, we invite you to share your story. If you’ve had to regroup to face new competition — made possible by digital technologies — we invite you to share your story, too. Cutter Consortium will publish a special “From the Field” report later Read more
The sesquiannual gathering of Cutter Consortium clients and consultants just took place in Cambridge, Mass., on November 15-16. The main theme was “digital transformation,” including the new business models centered on “digital data streams” and the implications of this transformation for the CIO’s organization. Cutter Fellow Prof. Karim Lakhani presented a Harvard Business School case study on “GE and the Industrial Internet.” It tells of GE’s decision to create a new entity devoted to applying IoT technology to industrial environments (manufacturing, transportation, electricity generation, etc.). There was a lot of discussion of how some other companies missed the transformation to digital services, in part by underestimating in the early 1990s the explosion in the number Read more
Life complexifies. Perhaps it is a fundamental law of information that the complexity of information increases. In the world of biology, over time organisms become more complex, with new genetic permutations appearing alongside of old genetic pieces. In the hyperastronomical space in the animal genome, nature constantly produces new combinations. In human knowledge and scientific discovery, the same is true. New insights are built on top of old ones. Breakthroughs in insight usually have higher levels of complexity and hence require higher levels of abstraction and difficult codification to accommodate the widening domain covered. We all know E=MC2 but how many of us really know what it means? In the world of medicine, treatments are Read more
“Commodity” is a bad word among technologists. It implies standardized, unchanging, noninnovative, boring, and cheap. Commodities are misunderstood. This post seeks to dispel some of the myths around the commoditization of IT services (i.e., the cloud). 1. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Is Not a Commodity Like Oil Yes, according to the technical definition of “commodity,” IaaS is not one. But then nor is oil, or gas, or coal, or pork bellies. None of these so-called commodities is perfectly fungible (i.e., so close to identical that a buyer is indifferent as to what is delivered), and being fungible is a prerequisite for any true commodity. When we refer to oil as a commodity, for instance, Read more
The 21st Century was introduced by the tumultuous climax of the dot-com boom on March 20, 2000 when the NASDAQ peaked at 5,132. Since then modern corporations marched on to become the majority of the 100 largest organizations in the world (in terms of revenue/budgets and employed people) surpassing the size of many sovereign national governmental organizations. And this phenomenon happened fast. In 1954, the Boeing Corporations became just the 23rd corporation to exceed $1 billion dollars in annual revenue. By the end of the 20th century, hundreds of corporations exceeded multi-billion dollars in annual revenue. I rejoined the University of Washington faculty in 2003 to research one of the hotbeds of corporate foundings and Read more