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Byron Aulick

Byron Aulick

Digital Transformation Manager at Docufree | Six Sigma, CDIA+, ECM Master and Project+ Certified | Former CEO ECM Institute

Digital Transformation: Platform Services Model vs. Traditional Software Licensing Model

Digital transformation is a business evolution that is forcing organizations in basically every industry to rethink how they collaboratively use technology, processes and people in order to meet changing customer demands, create new revenue models, and stay agile in a highly competitive marketplace. For many companies, the transformation journey was slow to get out of the gate—until the pandemic. Now, we’re seeing the majority of organizations (91 percent), adopt or make plans to adopt a digital-first business strategy.

 

Up to 93 percent of companies agree that innovative technologies are necessary to reach their digital transformation goals. Yet, 45 percent of corporate leaders don’t think their company has the right technology to implement a digital-transformation initiative.

 

Fortunately, newer cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) technology platforms have allowed companies to replace old technology models with outdated environments that previously hampered digital transformation. The cloud allows companies to bring on new solutions more quickly, innovate more easily and scale more efficiently to meet digital transformation needs—while also reducing technology risk.

 

So, where does all this upheaval leave the traditional software licensing model in terms supporting the digital enterprise? Can this model really survive in our results-driven economy?

 

The Solution: Platforms That Facilitate Digital Transformation

Building a digital enterprise is a journey rather than a destination, requiring a strategic partner with the navigational north-star focused on achieving organizations’ most critical business outcomes. Interestingly, less than 30 percent of organizations’ technology vendors are currently active partners in their digital transformation initiatives—although it’s been proven that partnering with vendors is one of the best practices to avoid failure.

 

At Docufree, we believe the customer journey begins with a process-first approach, followed by technology-enabled services to empower organizations to realize significant productivity gains versus implementing technology alone.

 

The Docufree platform embeds modern technologies, such as Machine Learning (ML) and Robotic Process Automation (RPA), paired with the human intelligence of certified experts, which helps guarantee customers will achieve their business outcome measures.

 

Business Outcomes Are the Name of the Game

A “business outcome” is a concise, defined, and observable result or change in a company’s performance, supported by a specific measure. Results should not be confused with outcomes. “Increasing efficiency” is a result, but an incomplete outcome. “Increasing efficiency by going paperless” is an example of a manageable outcome. Businesses today seek results-driven outcomes.

 

Companies want to:

  • Pay for results versus traditional software vendor licensing fees.
  • Stop wasting money on software that doesn’t work.
  • Move beyond the traditional software-licensing business model that is flawed and broken. They are tired of buying client-access licenses, then shifting to as-a-service models.
  • Use more cloud-services platforms with no hardware and/or software to buy, install or maintain.
 

Companies don’t want to:

  • Burn capital chasing an evolving technology landscape.
  • Make large upfront payments for complex software.
  • Pay large fees to consultants to configure the software.
  • Be disappointed the end-results don’t achieve the desired business outcomes.
 

Comparison: Platform Services vs. Software Licensing

At Docufree, we’ve successfully embraced the platform services model. We combine SaaS and Business Process as-a-Service (BPaaS) into unified cloud platform services so that organizations can focus on achieving business outcomes while keeping pace with the rate of strategic change. Docufree guarantees results for its clients as we help close their document-to-digital-data gaps and eliminate critical risks often found in do-it-yourself (DIY) digital transformation projects.

 

DIY companies are responsible for buying hardware and software, along with engaging multiple vendors and self-managing the solutions. The risks, with the potential to derail any digital transformation project, are numerous:

 

  • Integration: Time, resources, costs
  • Regulatory: Federal, state, local and industry
  • Deployment: Set-up time, support, expertise
  • Complexity: Reliability, performance and security
 

Docufree has a long track record of making information work for companies’ needs. A quick comparison of our tech-enabled platform services to traditional software-licensing models offers a glimpse into why Docufree’s customer-proven capabilities help organizations address their most mission-critical information-centric problems in their digital transformation journeys.

 

Technology-Enabled Platform Services

  • SaaS-service agreement
  • Docufree-managed solutions
  • ROI validation
    • No large upfront capital appropriations
    • No incremental staffing
    • Predictable, no-surprise billing
    • Seamless execution and reduced risk
  • A predictable recurring monthly subscription fee
  • Suite of service offerings enables customers to implement information-management solutions in a step fashion, making the buying decision simple and safe
 

Software-Licensing Solutions

  • Large technology acquisition capital required up front
  • Customer-managed solutions
  • ROI is difficult to measure
    • Technology investment dollars
    • Incremental staffing may be required
    • Unpredictable billing
    • Unknown utilization, saturation and risks
  • Technology vendors are paid large capital costs up front
  • Ongoing annual maintenance and support fees
  • Upgrade fees
  • Products are typically sold as a large-scale license which is more expensive to purchase and more complicated to install
 

Results + Outcomes = Digital Transformation Success

Realizing outcomes for a digital transformation initiative demands more than buying the promise of results from technology vendors. Companies should seek out technology providers that will work with them as a consultant while guaranteeing results and business outcomes—versus just selling you software. The ability to measure metrics and have a service-level agreement is extremely important in today’s business environment. A technology partner that can help your company identify information gaps and workflow bottlenecks at the onset of a digital transformation journey, then work with your team to establish actions and results to deliver the necessary outcomes will better position your business for the future.

 

Is your company willing to assume the unnecessary costs and risks with your digital transformation project?

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