‘Digital transformation is about ensuring you can transform over and over again’

21 Feb 2020

Diego Tartara. Image: Globant

Diego Tartara of Globant discusses the biggest tech trends he believes are changing the world – and how companies can be prepared for them.

Diego Tartara is CTO and business hacking studio partner at technology services company Globant. He oversees the company’s studios business, which he describes as “what sets the organisation apart”.

Here, he talks about his thoughts on emerging technologies, digital transformation and why training people properly is crucial for effective cybersecurity.

‘By the time highly intelligent robots hit consumers, the world will be different and much more beautiful’

Tell me about your own role and your responsibilities in driving tech strategy.

I’m responsible for overseeing the studios’ organisation within Globant to ensure technology expertise, delivery, capacity generation and growth among our client base.

Globant’s studios are what set our organisation apart, and this approach ensures we’re consistently enabling digital transformations for our clients.

We define studios as our deep pockets of expertise, whose responsibilities include developing people in their domain expertise, staying in the know about new technologies and assessing their potential to become new products or services, performing research and implementing new solutions.

In addition to overseeing our various studios and driving their tech strategies forward, I also play a role in accelerating the development of our employees.

Our employees – aka our ‘Globers’ – truly are our greatest asset in delivering value to our clients, and it’s important in my role to help our employees improve the way they engage with our clients to elevate the service value and innovation we bring them every day.

Are you spearheading any major product or IT initiatives you can tell us about?

Currently, my team and I are very focused on using AI to develop tools that will help us in critical aspects of our organisation, including recruiting, retention, coding, design and culture.

As it relates specifically to delivery, my team is leveraging AI to augment developers’ capabilities to deliver high-quality software in large and complex repositories. Through this process, we’re able to accelerate ramp-up times for new software implementations and simplify the reuse of code.

We’re also exploring how AI can augment our designers’ capabilities. While design is and will remain a very human-oriented process, we believe that AI can be used via image recognition to easily and quickly create designs based on existing templates.

I’m also very excited about how we’re using AI at Globant to help profile and identify which job candidates will be high performers. In 2020, implementing AI to a variety of business functions at Globant and to our clients’ functions will remain a major initiative and I’m looking forward to seeing what our studios accomplish next.

How big is your team? Do you outsource where possible?

The entire studios team is comprised of several thousands of Globers. That said, the team I work with the closest is about 50 employees.

Within each of our studios are small teams, which we call Agile Pods. Each pod is made up of a series of experts across specialisations who work alongside the client to ensure a more streamlined and collaborative approach to the final outcome.

The key to a successful Pod is that they have goals and a clear focus set for themselves in agreement with the customer, making them truly an extension of the client’s team.

While we outsource for a small portion of our projects, we aim to work with partners when possible. Globant doesn’t and will never fully outsource, as our in-house studios are what differentiate our business.

What are your thoughts on digital transformation and how are you addressing it?

There is so much buzz in the industry about digital transformation, but reinventing the way organisations do business by applying the best technologies is central to Globant’s mission.

As of today, I believe that every organisation should have ‘undergoing a digital transformation’ on their agenda. That said, despite knowing the theory, the risks of not adapting or even trying in different ways, many companies continue to be in the early stages of the digital transformation process.

Digital transformation is not just about making changes. To truly succeed, organisations must be prepared to consistently change over time. User expectations are constantly evolving, as is the development of new technologies, which means organisations should take a nimble approach to their digital evolutions.

From my perspective, digital transformation isn’t only about identifying and embracing the new wave of technologies. It’s also about ensuring your company is fit to transform over and over again.

There are several pillars to a successful digital transformation, including technology, processes, data and culture. We work with our clients on every aspect to ensure that by the time we finish every milestone, they are more mature and prepared to face the next challenge.

What big tech trends do you believe are changing the world and your industry specifically?

There are several key technologies that – when you connect the dots – understand the breakthrough we are undergoing. The biggest tech trends I believe are changing the world and the industries that Globant works within include cloud, data, IoT, AI, 5G, quantum computing and robotics.

That said, some of these trends remain immature and are not being widely used by consumers yet. For instance, 5G mobile networks are brand new, so their capabilities are not fully fleshed out just yet. Similarly, while quantum computers have potential, they are rare and still far from reaching their full potential.

We’re also still some way off from robots being completely developed, but by the time highly intelligent robots hit consumers, the world will be different and much more beautiful.

Software will always be the core or connecting tissue for this puzzle, so I expect an increasing complexity on a hyperconnected world simplified by the evolution of tools, languages and ecosystems.

In terms of security, what are your thoughts on how we can better protect data?

I believe capabilities to store, manage and use data have evolved faster than our ability to protect it. However, there are two key questions that IT leaders should ask themselves to ensure better data protection. Who do you trust to manage your data? How educated are you when it comes to security?

While the answer to the first question is self-explanatory, the second one is about training your people. You can take measures to detect information being compromised early, but your best bet is to prevent it.

I think companies understand the importance of data protection, invest in systems, processes and tools, but sometimes underestimate the importance of properly training their people.

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