ICT quality forms the basis for digital growth
Apple, Google and Facebook are now three of the biggest businesses in the world. In fact, six of the ten most valuable brands are tech companies (Forbes Magazine, 2015). This underlines how technology – and cloud
computing in particular – is the basis for lasting success in an increasingly digital economy. In the next decade alone, the deployment of Internet technologies in manufacturing could grow the German economy by an estimated 207 billion euros (McKinsey, 2014). Without digitization, this immense boost to output and affluence would be lost.
Availability and security are essential
ICT plays an ever greater role in innovation and economic growth. It needs to be reliably available around the clock, every day of the year. As a result, thwarting cyber attacks and foiling industrial espionage are vital. Poor ICT quality can degrade or cripple entire business processes. And this is not only true for purely digital business models, such as e-commerce – it applies to operations in all sectors, including the automotive industry, logistics, and financial services. Outages can be immensely costly in terms of lost revenues and damaged reputations. For example, when Apple’s iTunes and App Store went offline for eleven hours in early 2015, it cost the enterprise an estimated 2.2 million US dollars per hour. In other words, robust, secure and highly available infrastructures are vital.
A combination of people and technology is key
In light of these high stakes, 98 percent of businesses cite the ICT quality as the most significant criterion when choosing a service provider (ISG, June 2015). Certifications and long-term partnerships can give a first guidance. But how can you assess the quality of ICT processes and services? And what can you do to safeguard your own IT security and system uptime? Despite all preventative efforts, there is no such thing as completely failsafe IT. But a Zero Outage culture offers a reliable way forward – even in worst-case scenarios. Correspondingly, quality management should entail multiple and diverse mechanisms – both technological and organizational –including ongoing monitoring and regular audits, with the aim of continuous improvement in ICT quality. And across all activities, a combination of people and technology is key. In addition to state-of-the-art, highly available and secure platforms, people and processes play a pivotal part in ICT quality.