Digital transformation is coming for businesses of all sizes and industries. Smart leaders recognise this revolution brings immense opportunities to reimagine their organisations.

Cloud-based systems like SAP S/4HANA on Microsoft Azure allow a once-in-a-generation shift in how companies interact with stakeholders.

The results are transformative. A Frost & Sullivan survey of over 800 IT leaders found that improving operational efficiency is a top priority, as is growing revenue and boosting innovation. IT departments spearhead these changes, with 65% responsible for adopting new digital solutions. When evaluating benefits, technologists should consider how cloud systems positively impact their operations.

The cloud advantage

The cloud offers many advantages for managing the ever-growing data that modern companies collect and analyse. Cloud systems excel at storage, access, security, and compliance for structured, semi-structured and unstructured data.

This is why 87% of IT leaders say the cloud is essential for digital transformation and a cloud-first approach is best for new initiatives.

Critical cloud benefits include scalability, flexibility, easy onboarding, transparent pricing, built-in disaster recovery and freeing IT staff to focus on strategic projects.

The top priorities for ERP deployments are security, performance, responsiveness, and accessibility. Azure services purpose-built for enterprise succeed here.

Better security, agility, and innovation

Frost & Sullivan found IT managers are most concerned about security for ERP systems. But performance, flexibility and agility are also crucial, especially with hybrid workforces.

The cloud enhances all these while optimising costs and improving customer experiences, according to 48% of IT leaders surveyed.

Once ERP infrastructure moves to trusted partners like Microsoft, IT staff can drive innovation like analytics dashboards, connecting systems and sharing insights.

They can also reimagine customer experiences, supply chains and more. The cloud facilitates collaboration, streamlines workflows, and enables transformative technologies like IoT.

Real world success

Luminous gained operational efficiency and easy integration by combining the two platforms. Standard Chartered Bank tripled innovation investments to $1 billion annually, modernising core systems on Azure to consolidate and share data for real-time decisions. And Chobani achieved near-zero downtime and greater agility to quickly meet consumer demands (you can see these stories in the report).

Manufacturing leader Luminous used SAP and Microsoft technologies for years, so integrating them made strategic sense. The company recently launched an ambitious digital transformation strategy to connect people, products, processes, and plants. CIO Chander Khanduja said, “We made RISE with SAP on Azure and the Microsoft Cloud the backbone of our digital journey.”

What do these success stories tell us? That the winds of change are blowing strong. With cloud-based digital transformations on Azure, businesses can set their sails to capture the full power of this revolution.