A few of our previous blogs have shown how blockchain can add value to an enterprise. So, what’s the game plan for organizations that “get” the value of blockchain and want to take those next steps toward implementation?
Let’s focus now on the “how to’s” — things any large enterprise should consider when thinking about when, where and how to leverage blockchain, including how to choose the right partner to do it with.
There are lots of factors involved in leveraging blockchain successfully for the enterprise. But here are a few of the major, overarching dynamics to keep in mind:
Key Priority #1: Make sure your blockchain partner has expertise not just in blockchain, but also in your specific business environments.
Tech expertise removed from your business context is not really expertise — you need to know the industry dynamics within which blockchain is going to be operating. In healthcare for instance, it’s hard to trust someone who says “we’re blockchain” but doesn’t know anything about HIPPA or other regulatory elements. The same is true in other sectors where blockchain may be of use — including customs/border control expertise for global supply chain; FDA compliance acumen for pharma; or deep knowledge of government policy for U.S. federal implementations.
Key Priority #2: Make sure your blockchain approach addresses the entire lifecycle of enterprise implementation and use.
You should be able to set up a customized blockchain that is well integrated through several stages. For example, you should be able to set up a customized blockchain for testing and evaluating return on investment (ROI) for several weeks. The next step is to engage in an iterative process to implement. You may need to adjust the organizational structure or operational focus of your IT group to align with blockchain systems and processes. There should also be ongoing updates and improvements to make sure you never fall behind as blockchain continues to mature and evolve.
Key Priority #3: Leverage a microservices approach.
Microservices will help your blockchain solution be interoperable with other technologies like AI, biometric security and advanced analytic engines. The latest container/microservices technology can help integrate many other cyberservices on top of blockchain. The additional benefit of this approach is security is baked in, not bolted on. A security first, security inside approach is a major benefit when that’s happening in a microservices environment.
Blockchain has the potential to revolutionize companies and how they operate, but it’s something that needs to be shaped and curated for enterprise settings. In many ways, the book is still being written on blockchain in the enterprise, and Unisys has had the unique vantage point of helping write that book.
The more we learn about blockchain — both it’s promise and how to overcome the pitfalls — the more we’ll be able to continue bringing blockchain-fueled ROI to many larger public and private organizations.