The DX Moment Is Still Around The Corner For Many – If That Corner Is Still There…

Among the many conversations I have with vendors and end users themselves – via various online events – one of the most common buzz phrases of the past few years that still recurs more than it ought, is “digital transformation”.

Given that I first encountered ‘DX’ in full-on mode many years ago at a CA event in Barcelona (and long before CA was acquired) including a live video link to CA clients at a Las Vegas event (therefore also predicting the future) explaining their “DX journey”, you would be forgiven for thinking that the world had – by now – digitally transformed. But it hasn’t. There’s a simple reason for this – many companies simply don’t know how to do it…

The initial inference was “Internet presence” or, more accurately, “run your company as an Internet company, regardless of what it does and sells”. I think most CEOs got this. The problem was… timing. As the ‘DX’ movement gathered momentum, so did another transformation element – cloud! Suddenly, there was not only pressure on companies to transform digitally, but to also adopt the cloud, partially or wholly, to run its IT on. This, unsurprisingly, confused a lot of companies. Did the two go hand in hand? If so, how did you do either anyway? And what do we do with what we already have? Double trouble, in other words…

The result is that, even pre-pandemic, a lot of major names – especially in retail – bit the dust, and many hospitality/travel companies have now gone the same way. COVID-19, it seems, doesn’t just kill people, but businesses too. Meantime, the need to ‘DX’ your business is more critical than ever, “new norm” and all. At the same time, cloud transformation has proved costly and not the solution to DX, if not handled, managed and adopted correctly. Had some very interesting conversations on this topic very recently with Alkira, a US-based vendor with a few decades of experience being it, most recently Viptela (which Cisco found to its liking), which has introduced cloud networking as a service. This ais a concept with serious transformation legs – it joins the dots. More on this in future blogs…

At the same time, you’ll have read in this space about the emergence of SASE and how that too can have a positive role to play in DX. There’s a white paper on the topic available on the Cato Networks site:

It uses several case scenarios as reference points for the DX “moment”, such as mergers and acquisitions, global expansion, rapid deployment requirements and – of course – cloud migration, with advice on how to go about that transformation journey and, as such, it’s well worth a read.

Meantime, what we know is that the DX requirement looms larger than ever still for many businesses, the key words being “still” and “business”, ensuring the word “in” appears between the two! From a business perspective, this is life and death stuff – go transform!

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