Digital Transformation & Maturity

Orange uses DMM, The GC Index to speed transformation

Pascal Viginier, Special Advisor and former Group CIO, Orange, explains how TM Forum’s new Digital Maturity Model (DMM) is helping his company with digital transformation.

The online video presentation included an overview of the DMM, which is a survey-based tool that let’s organizations describe their level of maturity/digital capability, set target maturity levels and benchmark against peers, and its companion tool, The GC Index, which helps companies assess the potential impact of transformation team leaders. Viginier outlined how Orange is using both to advance digital transformation. You can watch the full presentation below.

Although Orange embarked on digital transformation without the DMM and The GC Index, Viginier says he wishes he could have used the tools from the outset.

“When I discovered The GC Index three years ago with TM Forum in Nice, I experimented for myself and I decided to propose to my team to do it as soon as possible and they all agreed that we should,” Viginier says.

GC stands for game-changer

The GC Index helps companies discover the impact individual members of leadership teams can have on the organization as a whole. It focuses on five primary roles:

  • Game-changers, who are disruptive and create original ideas. These are folks who “look at world differently and can be very disruptive,” according to Nathan Ott, CEO, The GC Index.
  • Strategists, who make sense of the radical ideas and figure out how they can work in practice. “A radical idea might be entertaining, but it’s no good unless we can make sense of it,” Ott explains.
  • Implementers, who make the ideas happen. They bring urgency, energy and persistence to the table to get things done.
  • Polishers, who look for ways to improve on the idea. “These are individuals who focus on standards, raising standards, and making things the best they can be,” Ott comments.
  • Play-makers, whose role it is to foster ideas by empowering others in the team. “This role is often overlooked when we’re in the heat of digital transformation,” Ott says.

Similarly, companies can put together different types of teams depending on the makeup of the individual team members. All the different kinds of leadership teams have strengths and weaknesses:

  • Inventive teams are radical and leading edge but they can get distracted by the possibilities.
  • Innovative teams are innovative but less radical; they focus on improving the services delivered to customers
  • Transformational teams are well-balanced and know how to apply creativity in a business context.
  • Traditional teams thrive in a stable environment; they focus on quarterly results and getting things done.
  • Business-as-usual teams already know what to do and just need to get on with it.

Becoming a ‘digital, efficient and responsible’ company

Using the slide below, Viginier pointed out that telcos and other network operators are threatened with complete disintermediation, which is not the case for many other industries.

“The main difference between the grades is we have to speed up [digital transformation]when we are on the left side,” he says.

Orange’s IT organization is at the heart of its Essentials2020 strategy, which the company announced in 2016. The goal is to become a “digital, efficient and responsible company”, and that means offering a superior digital customer experience by focusing globally in five main areas:

  • offering enriched connectivity;
  • reinventing the customer relationship;
  • building a company model that is both digital and caring;
  • supporting the transformation of business customers; and
  • diversifying by capitalizing on company assets.

Orange’s IT organization contributes to these focus areas through seven different streams: IT for customer management and diversification; big data; application program interfaces (APIs); IT excellence; secure IT, skills; and best-in-class IT for support functions. As part of the transformation, IT leadership is aligning all the groups in an Agile way of working, according to Viginier.

Finding the right mix of leaders

Orange applied The GC Index to its Global IT leadership team and discovered interesting results. When looking at the highest score for each member of the team, about 35 percent were play-makers, followed by strategists (24 percent), implementers (17 percent), game-changers (12 percent) and polishers (12 percent).

By aggregating a bit differently, Orange discovered that each of its team members have some game-changing qualities, and overall the leadership team falls into the transformation category, but is slightly traditional.

“We have a pretty balanced representation of the different styles,” Viginier says. “It’s a bit tiring because there is a lot of debate and diversity in the team discussions before decisions, but from my perspective it’s pretty efficient.”

He adds: “The only point we can see is we have a lack of polishers (in yellow). After having implemented the team, when choosing the team, I would do it a bit differently and choose more polishers to apply the lessons learned.”

Orange’s takeaways

Orange was one of the first telcos to experiment with the Forum’s DMM prototype, and the company is now working now to integrate it with its own internal maturity model. Orange is anxious to be able to use it along with The GC Index to benchmark with peers, according to Viginier.

And using the tools has helped Orange accelerate transformation.

“‘APIzation’ of the digital factory has been accelerated – we had significant mix of strategists, implementers and game-changers to make it happen,” Viginier says. “Analytics acceleration was also very much helped by a good mix of implementers, but also game-changers. Now we will begin to polish that.”

Use of The GC Index, in particular, has given team members more self-confidence and improved the acceptance of diversity.

“If we have a proper cocktail of GC Index in the teams, it brings superior performance and I think that’s what we’re on the way to achieving,” Viginier says.

“Were I to do it again, I would do it differently,” he continues. “I would first use the TM Forum Digital Maturity Model to assess our situation and the target. I would immediately assess my future team before selecting my team or just after selecting it to ensure the right team.”

He adds: “I would also extend the use of the GC Index to my business partners and to all operational teams in all countries.”

DMM availability

The DMM is available in a basic spreadsheet model. Members will be able to download it as part of Frameworx Release 17 beginning next week. An iOS app version is also available today. The eagerly anticipated browser-based version will be available by the end of next month.

The DMM is a survey-based tool that includes five dimensions, 28 sub-dimensions and 175 digital criteria with five unique levels of scoring.

“In terms of the five dimensions, culture is often the one that’s often overlooked – people can’t be digitized or automated,” says Robert Walker, Senior Director, Digital Transformation, TM Forum. “So those assets are going to be very valuable in terms of how you transform your organization.”


About The Author

Managing Editor

Dawn Bushaus began her career in technology journalism in 1989 at Telephony magazine, which means she’s been writing about networking for a quarter century. (She wishes she didn’t have to admit that because it probably gives you a good idea of how old she really is.) In 1996, Dawn joined a team of journalists to start a McGraw-Hill publication called, and in 2000, she helped a team at Ziff-Davis launch The Net Economy, where she held senior writing and editing positions. Prior to joining TM Forum, she worked as a freelance analyst for Heavy Reading.

1 Comment

  1. Very insightful case study of the methodology applied by the Orange leadership. Clearly, these tools can enable savvy firms to adopt a digital transformation agenda sooner, rather than later.

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