We live in turbulent times. The emergence of new technologies is constantly redefining not only the way businesses operate, but also the way we live. With the winds of change sweeping the business landscape, there can be no better time for organizations to accelerate their digital transformation efforts.
We have been through a year of unprecedented disruption. What lessons can the IT industry learn from COVID-19?
One of the key lessons to be learned from the pandemic is that nimble, nimble businesses are able to pivot quickly and adapt to disruptive times. They realize that investing in the digital transformation of the company is no longer just a benefit, but an imperative. These companies are able to offer new proposals to their customers and thrive.
The other key takeaway is that companies that have embraced remote working and kept their businesses remote have only experienced moderate-level disruption. In fact, the majority of them have thrived during COVID-19. With their workforce structured on globally distributed models, organizations like Publicis Sapient were already operating in different geographies. So their transition to this new style of working has been largely smooth.
Being global, most players in the IT industry work in a semi-remote environment. The most significant change observed is the hyper-localization of employees, now working from their individual homes. The industry has embraced it effectively. IT companies are now exploring the long-term sustainability of this new paradigm and how new entrants to the workforce can adapt to this new normal.
Digital acceleration is driving big changes in how companies think about their business models. What are some of these changes?
Every business faces four interrelated forces of change: changing customer behavior, technological advancements, new business models and societal changes. All four move at the same time, and the movement of one affects the others. Together, these elements are fundamentally changing the business landscape at an exponential rate, pushing companies to change their models. Digital has become a key differentiator, not just a commodity, contributing to the four forces of change. It underpins the capabilities required to adapt to change and execute it quickly and at scale.
Our customers don’t ask, “Do we need to change?” but “how do we change?” There are two primary motivations for this need for change: to exploit new opportunities or to defend against existential threat. Currently, the existential threat is the most pressing for our customers as they risk failing to meet customer expectations. and lose to competitors and new entrants.
What role does Publicis Sapient play in helping its clients transform?
We believe that transformation is not an end state but an ongoing process that delivers business value. This is an ever-evolving process, and companies must develop the strength of continuous improvement, striving to take the pulse of their customers. We work in partnership with our customers to reinvent their own applied processes that not only improve their efficiency, but also bring incremental change. The framework for this service is based on three key pillars: Speed, Quality and Value. This allowed us to build muscle for continuous improvement.
Our ability to turn problems into opportunities and create lasting value is our key differentiator, especially in volatile markets, where speed and quality are paramount. For example, one of our proven methods of acceleration is to ensure that our customers deliver the same set of features at a faster rate than their competitors, with even better quality. This helps us maintain an upward trajectory of improvement and co-create the future with them. Our integrated capabilities create the distinctive transformational impact our clients need to not only survive, but to thrive.
What is the profile of the talents you recruit?
To be able to lead transformation journeys for our clients, our employees must constantly evolve. We hire people with a learning mindset and help them grow into full-stack developers. They can go through the full lifecycle from code production to deployment with minimal handoffs between teams. This contributes significantly to maximizing their productivity and bringing incremental changes to the client faster. We attract talent with an agile mindset and train them to be versatile. Our ecosystem of full-stack developers contributes at every layer. This allows smaller teams to have increased ownership, which ultimately makes the cycle tighter and faster.
How does Publicis Sapient ensure that its people can keep up with the rapid pace of changes required in technologies and skills?
Not only is our company designed to enable the digital transformation of our customers, but we also strive to enable our employees to remain relevant in their careers. Our core values speak to enabling a learning mindset. Here they gain first-hand experience of solving real-world engineering problems and not just theoretical knowledge. Our training modules help them stay skilled and versatile. Top Gun Academy, our cohort-based learning program, aims to turn talent into full-cycle front-end developers. We provide end-to-end learning experiences for beginners joining us from college and boot camps that are aligned with industry and domain skills.