Posted by Nabil ABU EL ATA on May 9, 2013 in Optimal Enterprise | 0 comments

New approaches to benchmarking help companies identify better ways of operating

Today business and IT leaders don’t just want to know that their costs are in line with the market. Increasingly, they want to see how they compare in areas of innovation, agility, standardization and quality. And from that comparison have the ability to identify opportunities for future improvement. Multi-dimensional comparisons that are forward-looking require a new approach to benchmarking—one that’s directed at uncovering new and better ways of operating versus a historical review of how things have been done.

predictive analytics and benchmarkingThrough benchmarking companies seek to compare their business processes and performance metrics to industry best and/or best practices from other industries. Quality, quantity and cost are the most common dimensions of the comparison that allow companies to explore how their own results compare to best in class companies.

Traditionally, most IT benchmarking studies have focused on platforms comparisons, but today the benefit of such activities are marginal due to fundamental decreases in platform pricing, transference of complexity to higher process layers, uncertainty about availability of the right skills and/or adequate experience and practices.

In IT systems for example, we find that:

  • Skills in relational database modeling may influence an implementation performance by a factor 1:15 times
  • In Java platforms, the cost of framework in the performance of a transaction may raise to 60% or more
  • A serialization process in architecture may reduce the process throughput by 10 times
  • A business less urgent requirement for certain reporting during a critical window may elongate the time by 5 times

As a result, the restrictive form of traditional platform-only comparisons is obsolete and will soon disappear. In today’s dynamic business environment, all business process, IT and system layers are inextricably interlinked by complex factors, such as economic, historical, skills and maturity issues that should be understood before transformational changes are made.

A New Approach to Benchmarking

Today, a dynamic benchmarking approach that enables the enterprise to holistically compare business and IT layers to reveal interdependencies and provide transparency across complex systems is needed to yield true business value.

By using advanced mathematical methods of modeling, benchmark comparisons can now be made on multiple dimensions, including the following:

  • Corporations
  • Services
  • Processes
  • Implementations
  • Infrastructures
  • Platforms

With enterprise-wide visibility, a host of associated complementary activities become possible and work collectively to drive smarter transformational change including: testing, reviewing, project management, sunsetting, budgeting and business cases justification.

Finding the Answer to “What is the optimal future state I can achieve?”
New methods of predictive analytics with advanced mathematical modeling capabilities enable companies to cost effectively perform benchmarking and explore opportunities to achieve performance improvements within dynamic environments. Mathematical approaches are able to reveal current system inefficiencies and provide a future-oriented view into how changes across services, architecture and infrastructure will impact performance.

Benchmarking data in combination with pre-built models and templates allow companies to quickly (within a matter of weeks) and exhaustively explore different services, processes, architecture patterns and infrastructures in combination with factors such as demand side, organizational readiness and willing for change, best practices and lessons learned from similar implementations. In much the same way CAD/CAM is used in engineering and design, this process allows businesses to test ideas, validate plans and build operational models to perfect strategies before any invest­ments are made.

The Importance of Making the Right Technology Decisions

The right technology decisions are critical to successful transformation because today’s choices form the foundation that the business will be dependent upon on for years to come. With the right platform, the power and performance to be better, act faster and serve more intelligently will be inherent in every process and in the hands of every employee when and where they need it.  New dynamic methods of benchmarking and predictive analytics help companies not only identify the right path, but also guide the actions needed to achieve an optimal future.

 

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