Thriving in a changing world – how to seize the opportunity

Shutterstock image | Workday

When I think about the current business landscape, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that we’re not going back to the old world. The pace of change for Workday and our customers is not slowing down – on the contrary, it’s speeding up. And because of that, more and more businesses are rethinking the structure of their organizations to put themselves on the front foot and allow them to adapt to that change. 

Alongside the macro-economic headwinds that often buffet businesses, market disruptions, competitive pressures and rapid technology innovations are shifting markets faster than ever. Business leaders bracing themselves against the harsh wind of economic uncertainty can also feel the ground moving beneath their feet.  

At Workday, we believe that businesses need an enterprise management cloud to turn uncertainty into opportunity.

What I continue to hear in my conversations with leaders is that despite the uncertainty, many are committed to the digitization of key systems and processes – the appetite for transformation remains strong. These organizations are looking to increase resiliency and the ability to rapidly adapt, to not only weather periods of uncertainty, but capitalize on the changing conditions. The ability to overcome uncertainty, reduce technical debt and free-up resources to focus on high-return initiatives, depends on the digitization of the core business systems that serve as the central nervous system of the organization.  

Ask yourself this, does your company’s central nervous system help or hinder you? That means having a complete picture of your organization’s people, finances and operations. It shouldn’t take hours to get the information needed to support the business. And, as we think about innovation, how can artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) help your business to move faster and adapt to change.  

At Workday, we believe that businesses need an enterprise management cloud to turn uncertainty into opportunity. That means combining external and internal data to create a unified source of truth for a decision-ready organization.  

That all sounds great, but what does that look like for your business? It means employees can run a report, drill down into the details, then take immediate action – without worrying about stale data or being slowed down by calcified processes. It means you can manage the balance sheet using real-time data to support and measure the outcome of investment decisions. It means team members across the business can easily collaborate and scenario plan for what comes after a recession in one single system. It means providing a best-in-class employee experience and basing your people decisions on employee and skills data, instead of gut instinct.  

We know from experience that even as the economy softens, the demands on technology will become ever greater. While business leaders are focused on helping their organizations meet this moment, they must continue to prepare for tomorrow. It’s about making strategic investments in technology that will help the business thrive today and give it the edge over its competitors.  

Investment in skills technologies, fueled by AI and ML, is now more important than ever. AI has been on the horizon for decades, yet adoption still seems challenging for many organizations. It has the power to transform so much about the way we work. As well as encouraging businesses to think more holistically about their people and become skills-based organizations, AI and ML are already helping Workday’s customers to streamline processes and speed up decisions; whether they are surfacing insights and predictions that help inform decisions, unlocking opportunities for people as they look to develop new skills or creating personalized intelligent experiences so people can reach their full potential.  

We believe in delivering innovation that unlocks human potential, and we understand the opportunity that AI offers to positively transform how people and organizations operate. That’s why, with Workday, ML and AI innovation is built in, it’s not an add-on. Because we were born in the cloud we can continuously deliver innovation for our customers. All Workday customers run on the same version, receiving weekly releases of new capabilities. That increases the business value of ML and AI over time and ensures that no one is left behind.  

Uncertainty is not something any business wants, yet history is littered with examples of businesses that have shaped their destiny by seizing the opportunities available during a downturn. I’m extremely confident, from speaking to Workday customers, partners and our community that the appetite for innovation and the willingness to continue to invest will help forward-thinking businesses emerge even stronger and prepared for change whatever form that may take.