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Optimizing your new minimum-viable digital operating model in a time of crisis

As businesses continue to navigate an uncharted environment, they are looking for ways to build a well-coordinated set of digital capabilities, resources, activities, and partners that increases business agility and rapidly delivers value to customers.

There's no question that we are living in unprecedented times. Organizations large and small have abruptly been thrust into a world of uncertainty – a world where liquidity and business agility have become the two most critical strategic imperatives that are essential to survival.

The forces being applied to an organization’s operating model are different in times of crisis than in a pre-crisis era. Due to the accelerating rise of the digital economy – seen as the only viable alternative to traditional economies as governments mandate self-isolation measures for public health and safety – organizations are responding to the “new normal” with a renewed focus on their own digital operating model. An organization’s digital operating model executes a well-coordinated set of digital capabilities, resources, activities, and partners that increases business agility and rapidly delivers value to customers, in emerging or mature markets.

Shifting market demands are forcing re-evaluation of digital priorities

HPE Pointnext Services Operating Model.jpgIncreasingly, organizations are reevaluating their digital priorities and the downstream implications on the catalog of digital initiatives that deliver against those priorities. As organizations begin to define their minimum-viable digital operating model for the immediate term, they are challenged with questions like: “Will our operating model revert to the pre-crisis era, or has this crisis permanently reshaped our industry and operating model? Can we rapidly seize the new digital opportunities that are emerging with these unforeseen market-shifts? Can we build a resilient digital business model fit for a post-crisis era?”

In order to advance this new minimum-viable operating paradigm, organizations need to rapidly identify the minimum-viable digital capabilities required in order to sustain the organization’s core business operating model. Where these minimum-viable digital capabilities have not been deployed to meet the unparalleled demand in the COVID-19 era, organizations must rapidly scale-up and scale-out these digital capabilities to minimize the disruption to the organization’s core business operating model.

Rapidly re-calibrating the digital agenda doesn’t come without risks and challenges

When embarking on this journey, organizations face a number of challenges. Given the scope and scale of enterprise operating models it is difficult to isolate the minimum-viable digital capabilities that are critical for the organization’s survival. With various lines of business and enterprise functions competing for resources, organizations will need to make difficult decisions on the set of core digital capabilities to keep or bring online and which ones to temporarily pause in order to optimize efficiency and conserve cash. Moreover, boosting these core digital capabilities to meet the new demands of the COVID-19 era will require organizations to launch entirely new digital initiatives or accelerate a sub-set of existing ones.

Recommendations to rapidly realize your minimum-viable digital operating model

Since reaction-time is incredibly important, organizations will need to holistically orchestrate these digital initiatives in order to rapidly realize the new digital operating model. Now more than ever before, failure is not an option. Organizations can significantly de-risk their path to rapidly realizing their minimum-viable digital operating model by optimizing the interconnections and interfaces between the critical digital initiatives that form the new operating model. By uncovering and addressing systemic risks, detecting unrealized execution dependencies and identifying technology pre-requisites among these critical digital initiatives, organizations can isolate key technology enablers that will de-risk the execution of a new digital operating model.

Of course, orchestrating the execution of this new operating model is no longer strictly a technology conversation. This new operating model is as much about people, culture and governance as it is about technology. As challenging as it may be under the current circumstances, organizations will increasingly need to explore new methods to rapidly enhance employee skillsets to meet the demands of the digital economy and continue to evolve their culture to include a digital mindset.

Because COVID-19 has accelerated the viability of the digital economy as an alternative to traditional economies, rapidly building this new digital operating model necessitates a new level of partnership between various lines of business, enterprise functions and IT groups. As a bare minimum, it requires seamless coordination across traditional IT silos. The user experience, application, infrastructure, data, security and operations teams need to immediately pivot and coordinate their activities across the digital initiatives that enable the rapid execution of the emerging digital operating model.

By utilizing this approach, organizations can quickly develop a coordinated rapid execution strategy. Moreover, by synchronizing across peer groups to sequence and orchestrate these critical digital initiatives, organizations can maximize the range of value that the new digital operating model will deliver to the organization.

Enterprises taking this approach will be better positioned to outperform their peers in the “new normal” and emerge from crises like this one in a stronger position than before. If you would like to know more about how HPE Pointnext Services uses a unique framework and methodologies to help customers optimize their minimum-viable digital operating models, please reach out to your HPE contact. Alternatively, visit

Aviviere Telang

Global Digital Advisor,

HPE Pointnext Services


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Global Solution Strategist