I have just returned from a couple of weeks holiday in southern Crete, the place is beautiful, and the people are friendly and generally well educated. Without going all “Judith Chalmers” on you all (for those who are old enough to even remember her) there is a point to this.
One of the over-riding impressions of the area is that it is very underdeveloped, there are very few skilled jobs, one of the key reasons for this is the lack of ubiquity in public networks. Simply trying to operate a business within a modern digital enabled, context is difficult.
The networks are simply dreadful, with 4G cellular being about the best and only available in the conurbations, in the coastal areas 3G is available but flaky and even “Hard Connections” are very low performance and inconsistent. In the villa I used the “Premium” Internet offering sometimes dropped to 2.9kb/sec and yes, I am dull enough to have checked it!.
So, what is the point of this? In simple terms, the overall lack of investment in core infrastructures is holding the region back. It is driving some ex-patriation, with the young and ambitious leaving Crete to go to the mainland, Athens etc or in increasing numbers going to northern Europe or the US.
The parallel that I am making is that in today’s Digital and Connected world, to compete you have to be able to offer at least the same but preferably better than your competitor, be that at country level or at company level.
Simply put, if you can’t provide an equivalent or better service than your competitor, then you will inevitably fail to attract, or retain customers, and the same will apply with talent.
I recognise that I began this piece by focusing on networks, but simply networks are the “Manifestation” of the infrastructure. With a “Mobile Data” world the core infrastructure is just or more important. As the sophistication of the applications develop and Analytics and AI become embedded in everything we do, the focus on core infrastructures become more significant.
In addition to the performance characteristics required we have to be able to provide scale, compliance, security and resilience in every form.
Of course, if you have an unlimited budget it can be achieved relatively easily at one level but can be very disruptive. Major infrastructural change is disruptive if badly planned, many organisations such as the banks have legacy systems that were legacy systems 20 years ago.
It is critical to maintain your competitive advantage, in our digital world it is critical to have a clear plan about how you manage, operate and persistently transform your infrastructure to maintain or improve your infrastructure.
Here at Bell, we have the skills, experience, current knowledge and objectivity to ensure clients are not left behind in the “Digital Race”.
Author: Dave Leyland can be contacted at DLeyland@bell-integration.com to chat to about digital disruption and the technical landscape shaping today's world. He is also inspired by classic cars, injustices and Liverpool FC.
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