Resilience is top of mind for executives today, and as the world of business grows increasingly uncertain and volatile, companies that have purposefully developed capabilities to tackle ambiguity and unpredictability—in a word, resilience—are most likely to thrive.
Companies’ resilience is being tested as never before. Consumer spending in the US fell by almost 20% during the first two months of COVID-19’s explosive spread across the country, according to the US Department of Commerce, even as the pandemic disrupted 75% of supply chains, according to the Institute for Supply Chain Management. Resilience is a key driver of value and many companies are struggling to keep pace with IT challenges. With almost every organization having to depend on data, analytics, digital tools, and automation, digital technologies will constitute an increasingly critical element of business resilience tomorrow.
Three Phases of Resilience: Respond, Recover and Reimagine
By now, most companies have addressed the immediate priorities of the Respond phase of resilience by keeping employees safe, changing their ways of working, and dealing with key operational issues such as supply chain disruptions. Their focus now is on restarting and rebounding by adjusting quickly to the new realities on the ground. During the Recover phase, business will have to cope with uncertainty in demand, supply, labor markets, and credit availability. Traditional forecasts and operational processes are unlikely to be effective, so companies must develop data-driven sense-and-respond approaches to tackle the volatility and must learn to adjust rapidly to fast-changing scenarios.
The process of building resilience also has a critical Reimagine phase, which involves preparing the business for the future. The current situation is likely to result in permanent shifts in consumer and employee behavior, and some industries and business models will be irreversibly disrupted.
Companies can follow a three-step approach to tailor priorities to their specific situation and needs:
Step 1: Address Imperatives to Respond and Recover
The starting point in this three-step process is to address the issues resulting from lockdowns and to support business performance as markets recover. Companies must tailor their actions to their particular contexts, but most companies have taken a number of common actions in the Respond and the Recover phases. Many companies struggle in their efforts to respond and recover rapidly. In their initial response, companies must focus on business outcomes that will deliver the most value in the shortest time, such as protecting and growing the top line and developing agile operations.
Step 2: Reimagine the Future and Set Ambitions
Once companies have dealt with their immediate priorities, they must turn to their ambitions for the future—in particular, preparing to win in the new reality. They need to determine the scope of their ambitions and the pace at which they must develop resilience. They must review new methods and new IT resources that enable quicker paths to success.
Step 3: Build Sustainable Advantage
Companies must invest in developing sustainable advantage by building long-term resilience. To do that, they need to identify the gaps between their ambitions and their current resilience maturity. Projects that were top-of-mind six months ago may not be priorities anymore, and staying the course until the next planning cycle is likely to be a losing strategy.
LogZilla is leading the charge by offering free downloads of its Network Event Orchestrator that will enable data utilization for ongoing sustainability.
Our post pandemic economy has turned the spotlight on the urgent need for companies to become resilient. Investing in digital resilience will help companies both accelerate out of crises quickly and create sustainable competitive advantage in the new reality.