As Gartner lays out in its recent CIO Agenda Survey, the digital transformation of the enterprise is moving from an “innovation trend” to a “core competency.” In the next five years, CIOs predict digital revenues will increase from 16 percent to 37 percent, while public sector CIOs expect digital processes to expand from 42 percent to 77 percent.

Gartner rightly states that enterprises that fail to harness digital platforms threaten to undermine their performance, reputation and ability to attract talent. But true digital transformation is not easy. By definition, it implies both a holistic and radical change to the way an organization operates. It requires that enterprises reevaluate every aspect of their business activities and processes to align with digital technology, connect all the dots, and in so doing unlock significant productivity gains and value to customers.

What makes digital transformation particularly challenging is that – in case you hadn’t noticed – technology is not standing still. There are always new apps, platforms and devices to manage, and new integrations to ensure everything is connected. It’s difficult to keep up and, more importantly, it requires everyone to work together to avoid embarrassing and costly slip-ups.

Collaboration and partnerships are crucial elements of a successful digital transformation. It’s about bringing together the right expertise – both internal and external – around a shared long-term strategy. And it’s about partners putting aside short-term interests and really collaborating. This is why Samsung is putting alliances at the center of our strategy, as we support our enterprise customers in their digital transformation journeys.

Behind every successful digital transformation is collaboration and partnership. It's about bringing together the right expertise - both internal and external - around a shared long-term strategy.

An Expanded Focus on Alliances

As a company, collaboration comes naturally to Samsung. Whether it is because of our heritage in the components business or our long-standing channel-first philosophy, we’ve always preferred to forge partnerships than try to “own” the entire ecosystem ourselves.

This is very much the impetus behind our new expanded alliance program, which is designed to build a powerful partner ecosystem to allow us to better serve customers in key vertical markets. Whether they are software developers, technology vendors or system integrators, we are focused on expanding outreach and support to best-in-class partners to jointly bring together solutions that truly address industry and customer problems.

The digital transformation challenges our customers face are diverse – from helping brick-and-mortar retailers attract back millennial shoppers, to enabling field service technicians to share information seamlessly when at a job site. This, in turn, requires a mix of partners with specialized expertise.

Close Collaboration on Mobile Applications and Management

On the mobile front, most enterprises have moved far beyond email, calendar and contacts, but many are still struggling to forge a comprehensive application strategy for their many user groups.

Our work with Red Hat over the past year is a prime example of the power of partnership. As enterprises struggle to migrate their legacy desktop apps to mobile, our app strategy and services team is able to combine with Red Hat’s mobile app platform to accelerate the transition. We’ve jointly developed a set of easily customizable mobile apps that enterprises can use to reduce development costs, while providing a compelling user experience and secure tie-in to critical business systems.

Mobile security and device management is another key concern for enterprises whose employees are increasingly using smartphones as their primary productivity tools and accessing sensitive corporate information. In addition to the development of our defense-grade Samsung Knox platform and products, we’ve partnered closely with the leading mobile device management solution providers like VMware AirWatch, MobileIron and others.

Bringing Together Mobile and Vertical Market Expertise

Every industry has unique digital transformation challenges, and our alliances program allows us to partner with market leaders with deep vertical expertise.

In the rapidly changing and highly regulated healthcare industry, we have partnered with a number of medical technology providers, leading software companies and innovative startups who share our vision of a smarter, more connected healthcare and wellness experience. One example is our work with Breezie to provide solutions for older Americans. For the 2 million homebound seniors in the U.S., isolation threatens both their emotional and physical well-being. Samsung and Breezie have partnered to bring seniors into the digital age, creating a simplified, senior-friendly platform on our Galaxy tablets that enables users to access mobile health solutions, connect with loved ones and view relevant online content. Another strong partnership addressing challenges in healthcare is with Homecare Homebase, who we’ve collaborated with to provide home healthcare professionals with a powerful mobile tool to manage clinical workflows, billing and resource management for better health outcomes.

Digital transformation is an imperative in the transportation industry too, where trucking fleets are mandated to transition to electronic logging devices (ELD) by December 2017. Currently, America’s 4.2 million truckers spend an average of 110 hours per year completing paper logbooks, so the digital opportunity is significant. Here, we’ve aligned with leading telematics solution providers like Omnitracs and PeopleNet, as well as accessory providers like RAM Mounts, to deliver a durable, flexible cloud-based ELD built around our Galaxy tablets. This collaborative solution is helping trucking fleets make the digital transition, meet the new mandate, and save time and money.

In an era of technology collisions, enterprises must avoid digital fragmentation by reconnecting multiple disparate technology initiatives as part of a long-term strategy. We believe partnerships are the key. While we have been forging partnerships with leading industry players for many years, the expansion of our alliances program will allow us to create a collaborative ecosystem that can take on the diverse challenges of digital transformation.

Looking to partner with Samsung to lead the digital transformation? Learn more about Samsung’s expanded Alliances Program here.

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Kevin Gilroy

Kevin Gilroy has over 30 years’ in the B2B technology space, working with enterprises and partners to deliver powerful customer and employee experiences. As executive vice president and GM of Samsung Electronics America’s Mobile B2B division, he drove thought leadership, strategy and implementation to create a holistic product offering for the enterprise market. Previously, Kevin served in a variety of executive sales roles for SAP Americas, Arrow Electronics, OnForce and Hewlett Packard. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @kevingilroy

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