What Does Digital Transformation Mean for the Software Industry?
Digital Transformation implementation of various new technologies focuses on adopting better operational processes and enhancing the customer experience.
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New trends and technologies are rapidly emerging in the IT world. Clients today prefer innovative solutions that can be made available to them as soon as possible. Whether adding new features for existing products or launching completely new software, deploying new functionality continuously becomes the need of the hour.
According to Hinge Business Study, changing buyer's requirements and unpredictability in the marketplace were the main challenges businesses face.
To survive in this competitive industry, software companies must undergo digital transformation. A modern platform, effective strategy coupled with
upgraded operational processes can sky-rocket your digital transformation initiatives to yield the best results.
Why Does Digital Transformation Matter for the Software Industry?
Digital transformation has fundamentally changed the dynamics of the software industry.
Digital transformation does not only mean the implementation of various new technologies. It also focuses on adopting better operational processes and enhancing the customer experience. In addition, it is about leveraging the modern outlook to develop software that people love to work within more innovative and faster ways.
Digital transformation helps software companies solve their business problems in many ways.
Faster time to market
Software engineering teams can design and develop scalable software applications with modern software development approaches. Furthermore, leveraging various development tools and platforms, such as GitHub, BitBucket, Okta, and many others, can promote innovation, speeding up the software release processes. This helps you gain a competitive edge in the software market.
Digital transformation helps software developers and companies tailor their development process so that software deployment occurs at regular intervals.
Enhanced operational efficiency
Digital transformation helps software companies to reduce operational costs by investing more in innovation and less in software maintenance. Instead, it focuses on expanding the existing functionality and updating the infrastructure to suit the growing software requirements.
Strategic and cultural advantage
Bringing the entire team on one page helps instill confidence in team members. Further, constant communication and collaboration foster a work environment everyone likes to be a part of. Digital transformation fuels these changes, introduces team spirit and reduces employee attrition.
Increased developer productivity
Adopting modern development models such as Agile can reduce the stress on developers as work gets divided into smaller segments. This is supplemented by rapid and constant feedback, eliminating the need for back and forth on development tasks.
Due to its transparency, the team has complete control over the project schedules.
Improved financial advantage
Using tools such as cloud hosting, automation, IoT technologies, and team management, software businesses can reduce costs and deliver great customer experiences.
Digital transformation helps you save on different types of recurring costs. For example, the costs incurred because of manual human errors can be reduced with the help of automation.
Digital transformation focuses on building a collaborative environment that promotes continuous project deliveries, faster and thoughtful decision making, and excellent employee satisfaction.
It places your software at par with the industry standards by removing outdated ideas and strategically promoting modern processes.
How Can the Software Industry Leverage Digital Transformation?
#1 - Staying Open to New Technologies
In today's technology-driven world, new technologies and development frameworks are being introduced at an unprecedented pace. Further, customer requirements are also changing drastically. To stay competitive in this rapidly-changing software market, software companies should be open to learning and implementing new technologies.
Similarly, newer devices and gadgets like mobile devices, smartwatches, virtual reality glasses, smart headphones, and other smart home devices are also being introduced in the market at a faster pace. Software innovation thus becomes the need of the hour.
Software developers and companies must learn new concepts to prepare themselves for these completely new devices and technologies. For example, the adoption of microservices architecture allowed different technologies instead of using a standard one.
One module could be written in C# while another in Java or some other new programming language. Also, the developers could deploy the software modules when they were ready.
Microservices also promoted the reuse of each service in various areas throughout the software project. As a result, the Microservices architecture helped software companies follow an agile development approach and reduce the time to market the software products.
#2 - Following Agile and Flexible Development Approaches
Today, software systems need to be flexible enough to accommodate new requirements at any stage of the development process. Gone are the days of the complex waterfall software development model and required teams to follow a schedule-based process.
Agile is the new trend as it helps software teams to consider the introduction of new
functionality without actually breaking the software.
The agile method of software development is preferred because -
The agile method uses an iterative approach for project management which helps software teams to focus on improvements and create high-quality software solutions.
The agile framework allows changes in software solutions without any disruptions. It helps software teams manage changing requirements from clients seamlessly.
As developers can access the project progress regularly, they can spot bottlenecks or obstacles quickly. Thus, the minor issues are spotted before they become a significant risk for the entire software project.
The agile method promotes making clients active participants in the development process. By keeping clients updated about the development progress and capturing their feedback, you create an excellent customer experience.
#3 - Leveraging Automation, AI, and ML for Designing Smart Applications
Automation is one of the best methods to carry out recurring tasks as it drastically reduces the amount of time and effort spent on tasks. It contributes significantly to increasing team productivity as they no longer have to deal with repetitive manual tasks.
Further, machine learning and artificial intelligence can be leveraged to design personalized software solutions for customers. According to Oberlo, 91% of businesses invest in artificial intelligence to create better experiences and increase work productivity.
AI and machine learning can be used for predictive analytics to view historical data patterns and predict future outcomes. This is especially important if your development team designs and develops video games, weather forecast applications, investment portfolios, and related software applications.
#4 - Designing API-Driven Applications
Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) dictate how data is retrieved and updated on behalf of the system. It acts as a communication medium between two software modules, connecting them for seamless data communication. Being an efficient medium for data exchange and functionality,
APIs help developers reduce development time and costs and eliminate the risks of errors. It helps developers focus on core software logic instead of writing code for connecting and fetching data.
With APIs, developers can quickly respond to changing client requirements without causing many delays in the development lifecycle. Further, developers can reuse APIs throughout the software project and bring innovation to the application.
Unlike traditional systems using hard-wired, old technology, API-driven software provides real-time access to data that can be leveraged to automate tasks without disrupting existing operations.
For example, chats and intelligent wearables are a by-product of an API-driven platform. Therefore, it contributes significantly toward designing better software experiences for the end-users.
#5 - Ensuring Continuous Delivery of Projects
The traditional software development approaches allowed software releases only upon completing the entire software development lifecycle, which included - requirements gathering, analysis, design, development, testing, deployment, and maintenance. Modifications, if any, could be done only after the completion of the entire process. This significantly increased the time for software delivery.
With digital transformation, software teams can employ agile methods for software development. By following this approach, the development teams can release the software and bug fixes at any time only after proper testing.
Digital transformation helps software developers and companies to stay ahead of the competition by implementing new technologies, leveraging AI and machine learning, employing automation to carry out repetitive tasks, and intelligently handling data.
Start planning it today if you are embarking on your digital transformation journey.
Remember, digital transformation is an ongoing process that needs a thorough review at regular intervals. What may work for a peer might not work for you. So be confident and take the first step towards digitally transforming your business.
Published at DZone with permission of Lucy Manole. See the original article here.
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