The key to operational efficiency requires an unflinching examination of how well – or not – operations run today, especially before taking the plunge into a new business model. This includes examination of sales and marketing, finance, human resources, supply chain and beyond. For this study, CompTIA research took a look at how channel firms self-assess their current state of operational efficiency, asking respondents where they see areas of success and challenges, and what actions they are or will be taking to shore up their businesses. As a baseline, most respondents in the study reported undergoing a moderate or high degree of business transformation, which likely includes transitioning to a recurring revenue model such as managed services, specializing in a vertical industry or other niche, or becoming a business consultant focused on helping customers adapt to the digital economy. Based on topline results, two in 10 respondents assessed their current state of operations as very efficient, with another 39 percent deeming themselves mostly efficient at present. Thirty-six percent ranked themselves in the middle of the pack in terms of efficiency, with some areas in good standing and others not. How operational-efficiency work is prioritized reveals itself to be a key differentiator among firms. Six in 10 respondents described their approach as proactive and structured, while 36 percent said they operated in ad hoc or reactive mode. One group is preventing fires; the other is putting them out, for the most part. From a complexity standpoint, respondents are split pretty evenly that their business operational requirements have either gotten more complicated (45 percent) or remained the same (43 percent) over the last two years. The main reasons for greater complexity include more data streams to manage, the tug of new business models and a more challenging customer environment.

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