Le'Rhone Walker ADT podcast cover
Episode: 90

Le'Rhone Walker - Digital transformation or digital adaptation?

Posted on: 04 May 2023
Le'Rhone Walker ADT podcast cover

Le'Rhone Walker is the Vice President of Technology of the Healthcare division at the digital transformation consultancy Bounteous.

In this episode, we explore the concept of "digital adaptation" and how it relates to the better known terms "digitalization" and "digital transformation".  We talk about the importance of showing value quickly, of the mindset shift required to unlock the full potential of technology, and how an (open) digital experience platform can help. Le'Rhone also shares a number of client stories showcasing the value of this kind of approach.


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“As practitioners, we're finding ways to adapt digitally so we can provide value differently, provide value quickly, to show our clients maybe the end state of what things could be without going through a full transformation. And I think that those baby steps can help lead them to that larger vision and maybe find insights that weren't even on their radar.”

Welcome to the Agile Digital Transformation Podcast, where we explore different aspects of digital transformation and digital experience with your host, Tim Butara, content and community manager at Agiledrop.

Tim Butara: Hello everyone, thank you for tuning in. I'm joined today by Le'Rhone Walker, Vice President of Technology of the Healthcare division at the digital transformation consultancy Bounteous. Here on our podcast, we very often talk about the importance of fully committing to digital transformation rather than doing it haphazardly. 

But when we were discussing potential topics with Le'Rhone, we realized that we really don't focus enough on those use cases where companies want to embrace digital, they want to digitalize certain parts of their business, but they don't have the capacity to commit to a full-on digital transformation – which doesn't mean that they'll do the transformation haphazardly, right.

So, we kind of dubbed this concept “digital adaptation” with Le'Rhone, and this is what we'll be discussing today, so, the concept of digital adaptation and when it makes more sense to go with digital adaptation instead of a full-fledged digital transformation. Le'Rhone, awesome to have you here, I'm excited to get right into it with you.

Le'Rhone Walker: Thank you Tim. And that's a fantastic intro, I think this topic is super super interesting and I'm looking forward to diving in.

Tim Butara: Yeah, same here. It's like, when we were discussing potential topics, when we arrived on this topic, it was just this lightbulb, this eureka moment. We were like, oh yeah, of course we have to talk about this. Because you've also seen this in your client work, right. The use case that we've described right now and which got us to even talk about the concept and to dub it digital adaptation.

So, yeah, definitely an exciting and a valuable topic for a lot of listeners who are maybe going through similar problems, right. Especially with the looming recession and everything going on around us, it makes sense to digitalize, but a lot of people might shy away from it because they don't have the capacity or the budget to fully commit to it. So, yeah, we're here to help.

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, this is super interesting. So, this topic is very relevant to a situation I found myself in a couple months ago. So we have a super smart team at Bounteous, as you mentioned, we're a global consultancy, we have folks all over the world. 

And with my alignment to our healthcare business, we're meeting with some fantastic healthcare partners. And we're sitting in this beautiful office, meeting with this client, we came prepared, we had our deck ready, we were going through all of our sales material, our case studies, and the team was on fire.

And we got to the end of the conversation, and the client is looking at us, hey, that sounds great. Obviously you're capable. You have the people to back it up and you have the stories and you have the accolades. But everybody comes in here and talks about digital transformation. If I bring this story to our executives, they're going to say, oh, another one of these? Didn't we just do this?

And that got me thinking. There needs to be a different angle here. We can't all be digital transformation organizations, because not everybody is ready to commit to yet another five year plan. Don't get me wrong, we should still have that north star vision, we should still have things that we're walking towards and goals for the organization. But it got me thinking, there needs to be a different way to approach these problems, there needs to be a way to show value quickly, there needs to be another approach than, let's bulldoze and start over, you know, start from scratch kind of approach.

Tim Butara: So, if I understand it correctly, or I mean, it should be understood like this, that digital adaptation is not just a subset, or a scaled down, watered down version of digital transformation. And then on the other hand, I think it's safe that it's also not the same as just digitalization. Where would you place digital adaptation with regards to these two and what are the main differences between them?

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, so I think that if we were to define this concept that we just came up with – it's still a bit of wet clay – I think that it is changing the approach from looking long term to short term. You know, how can we provide value quickly? Where can we find wins? How do we get involved with organizations and understand how they work? Understand what's important to the decision makers, show value, increase revenue, make the experience frictionless for users, whatever the goals are – how do we do that very very quickly?

Reminds me of a story – I'm speaking at a conference next week. And one of our clients is Shake Shack, and they have 250 physical locations in the US alone. If you're not familiar with them, they have delicious hamburgers and shakes and crinkle cut french fries which are my favorite type of fry, if we're voting. And we've managed a lot of their digital experience. 

And through Covid, you mentioned, the economy changing, thinking back to Covid when restaurants were shut down, if your main driver of revenue was people coming into your establishment, buying burgers, shakes and fries, dining, and then all of a sudden your dining room is shut down, what do you do? You're not going to ship burgers to people. The model is broken overnight. And so they came to us and said, Bounteous, we need a plan, we need to figure out, how do we pivot and how do we do it quickly?

That, in my opinion, is a situation where if we were to walk in and said, well, we believe that digital is heading this way. For your business, here are the bets that we think you should be making and here's how technology can enable it, and here's the five year plan to get there. You'd be out of business before you even start.

And so, what we were able to do in that situation is, they didn't have a curbside delivery option, meaning you couldn't log on to the website, order online, drive up to the curb and have them walk out the sandwiches or the burgers and fries for you. So we added that capability and we did it in seven weeks.

So, that's a situation where we said, ok, this wasn't part of the plan, this wasn't on the roadmap, but we need to adapt very quickly and roll this out. But what's neat about this, and this I think gets back to the whole the difference between that and digital transformation, is there were some insights that we gleaned from that experience. 

So, in the pilot that we did for this curbside delivery program, 30% of the folks that were using this new service were new to the brand. So, it was a brand new audience, they'd never ordered before, and they said, oh, ok, well, everything else is shut down, let me try this other solution. I've always wanted to try it and now's a great opportunity.

So, they found a brand new audience – again, not part of the original plan, not part of the five year digital transformation thing, it was just a seven week pivot. And additionally, the folks that were buying curbside, their ticket prices, the revenue that they were getting for their online curbside orders were larger than what they were getting in store. 

So, the audience was 30% larger, the average ticket price was larger, and this was a brand new thing that we rolled out in just a matter of weeks. Now, you could take that concept and maybe that is part of a larger strategy that gets you toward digital transformation, but again, it's that adaptation that really pulled those insights out and was able to recognize revenue quickly.

Tim Butara: I think, one of the main benefits that I see here is that you're doing more than just digitizing processes, but you're also getting your foot in the door to kind of the whole digital transformation process, right. Because it's difficult to start if you know that you'll need five years to digitize everything, and these five years may come with, I don't know, losses in revenue because you're investing in the digital transformation.

But digital adaptation – and I love the word that you used before, you said that they were able to adapt, right. So, if we're trying to promote this concept of digital adaptation, this is perfect – this allows them to transform what's the current goal or the current business driver in as streamlined a way as possible without shutting all possibilities for further adaptation and further innovation and further transformation.

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, that's well said. And, again, you don't get these insights sometimes if you're looking at that north star vision, and it's like, we're only doing these things, because it aligns with the vision. There's all these other things that could also help drive revenue and help change the business and create this whole new opportunity that wasn't even on the roadmap. And sometimes, when you're all in digital transformation and that's the only thing on the table, you can miss these other opportunities. I love stories, so I have another one for you, if you want to hear it.

Tim Butara: Yeah, go ahead, go ahead.

Le'Rhone Walker: So, I'm the healthcare guy and I'm telling all these food stories, but I think that these are pretty interesting. I'm not sure if you're familiar with the pizza chain Domino's Pizza, if they have them where you are.

Tim Butara: They don't have them where we are, but Iztok and I went to a DrupalCamp once in London, and the first thing we did there was to go have Domino's.

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, I think if you go to Tripadvisor and you say “things to do in London”, Domino's is at the top. Domino's Pizza has been a client of ours for a number of years. And while we were working with them, one of the insights that we gained was, there's this period – and maybe you can relate, I know I'm this way – there's this period in a day, normally for me it's like around 3 o'clock, 4 o'clock, where I'm like, what am I having for dinner?

Maybe it's been a busy day and I skipped lunch, or I skipped breakfast, and I'm like, I really need to eat something. Do you order out, do I have things in the fridge, do I need to go shopping, what am I going to do, this is coming up? And the problem just intensifies if you have kids or if you have a family, you're just trying to figure out, like, what on earth are we going to do? And I'm the worst, cause my wife will ask me, and I go, I don't know. That's not very helpful.

And so, we found that insight. And as we were talking to Domino's, we said, you know, what if there's a way that when these moments happen, which, from our research, happening every day, people typically eat at least once a day; is there a way that we could use that to our advantage? Is there a way that we could prompt them to say, hey, maybe you should order from Domino's?

And additionally, what if there's a way to track that order and understand exactly when it's going to arrive, so you could time it when your kids come home or when dinnertime is ready? Can we use digital to help change the experience, so you're not always having to call, wait for somebody to pick up, order your food, hope that they made it correctly, hope that it arrives on time, have no idea between when you call, when it shows up, when it's going to get here? That seemed like a bite-sized chunk – not that it's not a complex thing to solve, but that felt like something we could do to just enhance the experience of ordering pizza.

And so, we pitched the pizza tracker to Domino's and said, we have this idea of this system where you can order online and you can track the entire process of pizza delivery. And we went for it. And so Domino's wasn't doing this before Bounteous got involved, so we dreamed this up, we built this platform for them, we rolled it out. And they went from zero to billion dollars spent online through pizza tracker, through technology that we built, just off of this insight of, folks get hungry around dinner time, and there's probably a better way of ordering than calling in.

And one thing that's really neat, if you start talking about digital transformation, you could argue whether that was transformation or adaptation, I think that there were maybe steps of adaptation that led to a transformation, if I was being fully honest there. But as we interviewed people after we rolled this out, they said that, if I call Domino's and order on the phone versus ordering online and using the pizza tracker, it tastes better to me when I use the pizza tracker. 

Same process, same ingredients, but it just tastes better because I feel like I have more insight to the process and I'm invested in this entire journey. And when you talk to Domino's now, they say that they're a technology company that sells pizza, they're not a pizza company that uses technology.

So, I think we got to digital transformation, but it started with these small ideas building on top of each other, showing you value quickly. But if we would have walked in and say, day one, Domino's, guess what, you need to be a technology company that sells pizza – it probably wouldn't have gone very well.

Tim Butara: This was the perfect showcase for what we just alluded to about getting your foot in the door with digital transformation. And I love– this is touching upon something else, but it's also relevant here. Often, digital transformation and digital adaptation, or any kind of these digitalization processes, I guess, they can take really awesome ideas from other sectors, right.

Because the pizza tracker is something that's existed with packages – you know, tracking your package when you order off Amazon or off another ecommerce site – that's been used to improve the customer experience for ecommerce for quite a while now. But now you actually have – I won't say food company, I'll use your term, a technology company that sells pizza – we have a technology/pizza company that's now using something that's akin to a postal service feature, and they've totally revamped and streamlined their business through it, I love it.

Le'Rhone Walker: That's beautifully said. And it's– again, I get it, we're consultants, walking into the room and saying, we're going to go with this transformation, that's the fun stuff and you get in agreement with the client, and from a business standpoint, it's great, because you're locked in for a long time. With the current economic environment and coming through Covid, I think it's challenging all of us to think differently. Like, AI– I can't help, I'm sorry, Tim.

Tim Butara: Can't help bringing up ChatGPT, huh?

Le'Rhone Walker: Yes! So, I pay for an OpenAI membership, just personally, cause I just want to immerse myself in what's going on there. And what's nice at Bounteous is, we have some folks that were looking into this before it was cool.

Tim Butara: They were hipster ChatGPT users.

Le'Rhone Walker: Oh yeah. There's a few people that I think of in particular that, literally years ago, were training their models and talking about the implications of what AI could do, and we'd get presentations on the future of AI and how it can enable all these things. But it was all just theoretical, and now it felt like overnight, using air quotes, all these capabilities are here.

And I feel like this is maybe another area where we are finding ways to adapt our message, adapt our way of working without saying, ok, now every company needs to be an AI company. And it's going to be this long transformation project. And we need to put everything on hold until we get this thing rolled out.

Boards and decision makers and maybe people outside of technology – that's not how you sell that idea and that vision. You need to show value, you need to show what these things can enable, and ideally show that quickly. We're talking about, what can we show in weeks versus months and years?

Sorry, I have all these stories; I was in a pitch, an internal pitch prep meeting for a hospital system that we've been looking to get in front of. And this was months ago, and I remember sitting in this meeting and our creative team were telling this amazing story about reimagining the hospital experience for not just patients – so, something happens to you, you're going to the hospital, how can we use technology to make that better for you as the patient, but also for doctors and nurses.

And even, going back to the patient side, when you leave a hospital setting, what is that experience? What do the follow ups look like? How can you check in with your primary care physician? How do they follow up with you? How do we use all the tech – I'm holding up my iPhone here – that we have glued to us to make that experience better? And they could've approached this a lot of ways. They could've just used text and said, use your imagination and we can take these ideas to the client, or they could've roughly sketched some ideas down, so I had some sort of visual foundation. 

But what they did is they used AI and they said, I'm going to send these prompts, I'm going to have it generate full high-fidelity scenes, so, as they're presenting, as they're sharing their words, as they're sharing their concepts, I had these high-fidelity visuals that would walk me through experiences that don't exist today – and probably the real thing would be different, if we get into the nuts and bolts of it – but it was such a fun way to experience storytelling, and they used AI to generate a lot of the visuals for that presentation.

And again, this was months and months ago, before people were tweeting about ChatGPT every three seconds. And I feel like, as practitioners, we're finding ways to adapt digitally so we can provide value differently, provide value quickly, to show our clients maybe the end state of what things could be without going through a full transformation. And I think that those baby steps can help lead them to that larger vision and maybe find insights that weren't even on their radar.

Tim Butara: So, ChatGPT is basically a digital adaptation tool.

Le'Rhone Walker: I mean– so, there's a caveat there, that you don't want your sensitive client information or proprietary information to be part of the training set. So, we have, pretty much no client data goes into any of these services at Bounteous, we have a pretty hard stance on that.

But even to the individual – so I mentioned I have an account that I just use personally. When I know a meeting is coming up, instead of just pondering – I like to walk and get outside and that gets my memory jogging – I'll just throw some prompts into a few of these models and see what it spits and almost start brainstorming with myself before I enter the meeting.

And so the idea is that, if I can shorten my time to finding ideas that I think are interesting or I want to share with the team to an hour instead of multiple hours, and you look at that over the course of a month, a year, years – that's really powerful. And so I'm able to adapt what I'm doing and how I provide value by using technology and using AI before I even get together with my colleagues who are way smarter than I am. And together we'll come up with these great ideas.

And I know, it's work. So not everybody's going to do it. But I think this is what people are expecting now. They're like, you are just supposed to know our industry, you're supposed to know how can we best provide value to the people who pay for our services or who use our services. That's great, but how do we do it faster? How do we do it better?

Tim Butara: I think that another thing that's common to digital adaptation and digital transformation, based on everything that we've talked about so far, is also this key mindset shift that's maybe not so present with just simply digitalization on the one hand, right. Where digitalization is just, ok, maybe you move your physical paper folders into Excel or something, that's like the basic use case. But leveraging ChatGPT and changing the way you think to get the most out of these digital technologies, I think it's very similar between digital adaptation, as we call it, and digital transformation. What would you say?

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, I fully agree with that. It's like we have this new tool chest of tools available to us. And I think that there are two paths that are happening, it's happening very quickly. There are the folks that will continue to do what they've been doing, and continue to pitch the way they've been pitching, and continue to sell the way they've been selling. Or, there are the folks that are leaning in and saying, well, let's slow down, let's understand, what does the new toolset look like? How can we use this to our advantage? And, yes, it's making our lives easier, but it shouldn't be making us lazier.

And I know we're getting on AI, but I think to maybe the larger conversation. I don't know if you saw the Google video that they released yesterday with some of the tools that they'd recently rolled out to their Workspaces platform. But they had an example, where they had an Excel doc that had a number of clients listed, you know, first name, last name, and then a row for messages. And you could intelligently fill out custom messaging for all those clients and then use like a mail merge to email them and not have to write any of that.

That sounds great, and there are definitely advantages to that. But I think that the message there should be less about, oh, now I don't have to write custom messages to this list of clients. It should be the, oh, well, if I can use this technology, how do I make this super hyper personalized to the individual, so it doesn't feel like a machine is writing this. It feels like me the person who is talking to you, Le'Rhone talking to Tim, sat down, wrote this out, it wasn't just some AI generated thing that just took a couple data points and threw them in a mail merge. 

Make it really hyper personalized. And I feel like that extra layer is where we could provide value with, you know, 10% more effort. And my concern with some of what I'm seeing from some examples of– just the last day, today is, what, 15th of March, that GPT-4 is rolled out, people are saying, oh, I don't have to do A, B and C anymore, this is great; AI will do it!

Tim Butara: Yeah, that's… I wouldn't think about it like that.

Le'Rhone Walker: That's right. Oh no, that's the way we want to approach it. I think it's, how do I take what I'm doing today and use AI to make it better? And then going back to the larger conversation, how do we adapt the companies that we're working with, and how do we find these insights– how do we use AI so that we can have somebody working 24/7, thinking about our clients, thinking about these problems, thinking about opportunities to improve the organizations that we work with, improve society even? I think that's really where the win is, and the tooling is just there overnight seemingly.

Tim Butara: And what do you think we're likely to see in the future here? You know, we started talking about all of this new potential. I think this is the right place to dedicate five or ten minutes, or however much we need. I think if we wanted to talk about this for an hour or two hours, we could talk about it, but we need to be at least a little bit mindful to our listeners. 

So, what do you think we're likely to see in the future, maybe in terms of new technology adoption and how that will coincide with digital adaptation versus digital transformation, and how companies and brands and organizations will approach all of this?

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, so, one of the biggest problems in tech is just connecting systems and sending data to different systems. And I feel that what we're seeing in tech now and what we're seeing with some of the new tooling and interoperability is that is starting to become frictionless. 

And that's huge because there are so many experiences out there that are poor, where you're having to log– and I'll just use healthcare, because I'm the health guy. You want to find information. So, we moved about a year ago. And the healthcare provider we were using in the US – and I know that this is different depending on what country you're in and all that – but in the US I was trying to find a primary care physician, because healthcare is through the organization that I work with.

And I remember logging into the portal where I'm supposed to be getting the information, and that sent me to another portal, which sent me down another path. And I ended up taking screenshots and sharing it with our healthcare team at Bounteous. And I forgot the full number, there were twenty something slides from me entering, like, I want to find a primary care physician, to giving me a list of names. And even when I got to that point, they were still having to filter down and figure out, ok, of this list, what makes the most sense?

What I'm hoping is that I can leverage technology, leverage AI, and have it do that work for me; send me a list of names that align with my healthcare plan, that are within a ten mile radius of where I live. And that follow this certain criteria and have it revealed to me, so I can just remove all that friction and all those steps.

And then when you bring that to an online experience, same thing. You don't want folks to have to jump between multiple systems. We should be pulling out information and servicing it for the user, so it feels like you're using an iPhone, it feels like an app-esque experience; even though behind the scenes it's complex, because there's all this data that's coming from different sources, some of it is private, some of it is public. But I think that we could leverage this newer tech to make that feel frictionless, even if it's really a little more complex.

I think about, I have parents that are fortunately still alive and retired now. And some of the questions I get, I'm like, I can see why this is so confusing; but it shouldn't be confusing. And my hope is that, it doesn't matter if you're my five year old daughter or my retired parents or me, who is VP of Technology at a consulting firm – these experiences should be fun to use, should be easy to use, should feel frictionless, and shouldn't be based on if you grew up with computers, or if you happen to have a technology degree or if you're an engineer – you should just be able to use regular plain text prompts and get what you need.

And so, I'm going down a rabbit hole now, maybe a little off base from where you started with your questioning. But I think that's the end state, is we want to make these experiences very easy for people to use – and extra points if it's fun for them to use.

Tim Butara: But, no, it actually ties perfectly into another thing that I wanted to ask. I know that you Bounteous are also Acquia partners. And Acquia, in recent years, it's been able to position itself as the leading digital experience platform, or DXP. And, you know, a platform sounds like something big, something that you have to commit to.

But, from what I know about DXPs and their flexibility and their nature of how you can use them, how you can leverage them, it can actually be an important tool for digital adaptation. And I think it's crucial to guarantee this frictionless state, this interoperability that we were talking about just now.

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, that's a great point. One of the things I love about the Acquia ecosystem is that it's open. And so, when you're talking about a composable architecture, where you can plug and play the pieces and the packaged business capabilities that you need, meaning–

Actually, let's take a step back. One of the things that we talk about at Bounteous is the spectrum of digital maturity. Meaning, you may come to us and say, ok, we want a website redesign. And we're like, alright, are there other things that you want to do? It's like, not right now, we're starting with this – and I'm simplifying. 

And then we're like, ok, you're here on the spectrum. There are others that are like, ok. We want to get into deep personalization, we want to better leverage our CDP, we want to find insights from analytics, and we have all these other needs, and we're multilingual, multi region – it's just a different enterprise. And that is a different part of the spectrum.

And so, the first step is just understanding, for your organization, where do you sit? Understanding where you want to go is great, but what is the immediate need, where do you want to adapt more immediately? And then we can help you get to that final digital transformation state. And what's nice about the Acquia set of tools is you can start with the set of pieces that you need today, and as the organization grows and as your needs change, you can adapt for the future without having to jump ship and go to a completely different platform.

And I think the other thing that's pretty compelling is, you don't need to be all in on just the Acquia tools. We can integrate with the existing tools that you have. You can have multiple services, you can have multiple DAMs, you can have multiple commerce platforms. And, really, if you're looking composability, just use the API layer to pass data back and forth.

You didn't ask this, but one thing that we found very interesting at Bounteous is, if you look at this as a chart, and at the top of the chart there are channels – so that could be the website, maybe mobile app, a kiosk – and at the bottom of the chart are your different packaged business capabilities – so, maybe that's commerce, or your DAM, or your CMS. There's this layer in the middle, which we refer to as the orchestration layer. And what we've been encouraging clients to do is, if you have your core business functionality in that orchestration layer, that gives you the freedom to really plug and play. 

And you can add new channels quickly at the top of the chart, and you can add capabilities quickly at the bottom of the chart, because your core business logic is in that middle layer, and that moves with you and with your organization. So it's not throwaway work, which is pretty compelling. And Acquia enables us to do that really nicely. I have a story, if you'd like to hear it.

Tim Butara: Oh really? I didn't think you'd have a story. Surprising!

Le'Rhone Walker: So, one of our healthcare clients that I really admire, that we get to work with very closely for the last three years, is a brand called Birdi. Hats off to Jon Salona and his team, cause they're doing some really great work. The Birdi product that they've launched, they offer low-cost prescriptions to folks in the US; again, I know this audience is likely larger than the United States, but prescriptions and medical costs and healthcare in the United States is a big problem. And I haven't looked at the latest stats, but I know at one point, that was the leading cause of bankruptcy, were healthcare costs in the US.

And so, their service allows you to have greatly reduced pricing on prescription drugs. Really compelling program. But they came to us and said, alright Bounteous, we want to work with you. We're interested in Acquia, we're interested in Drupal, but we already have a lot of systems in place. We have over 70 APIs that have private customer information, product data, prescription data, all these internal systems. 

Please don't come to us with the digital transformation conversation and tell us that we need to start from scratch, that we need to blow it up and turn this into a really long engagement. We want to find value quickly, we want to get to market fast, and we don't want to start from scratch because we've invested a lot of time and money into all these systems that exist today.

And so, what we were able to do is, we were able to take those systems and we were able to figure out, how do we leverage what's already there? How do we add Acquia and Drupal in a mix to pair the back end, and then we have Gatsby pairing the front end, so we're talking about frictionless, so the UI feels nice and fast and performant and it's what people expect, even for healthcare organizations, which, unfortunately, the bar is pretty low for a lot of those experiences.

And what we were able to do is we were able to leverage that platform to roll out their desktop marketing site, their mobile app, and also the online portal. So, if you're a Birdi customer, the portal that you log in to manage your prescriptions and get drug information and all that, that's all powered from the same system.

Now, backing up maybe to an earlier conversation, if we would have said, this is a digital transformation effort. We see that you have all these APIs, we see you have all these platforms, we need to start from scratch because we'll do it “the right way”, using air quotes. It's going to take years, and this and that, and millions of dollars – that was not the case. It was like, how do we quickly roll this out? And we were able to do that through Acquia, with Drupal and Gatsby in this composable manner, and not blow up their current infrastructure.

Tim Butara: So, correct me if I'm wrong, but it's much easier to do digital adaptation with an open DXP, whereas a non-open DXP, a closed DXP, would be more suited for a full-on transformation.

Le'Rhone Walker: Yeah, I think so. Not impossible, cause anything is possible with enough time and budget, right. But for organizations that want to move quickly, these platforms that are open are just suited for this type of work. And clients also– I think Covid maybe has got people thinking, alright, we don't want to be stuck with something that makes sense today, and then some large event happens that we're not predicting, and all of a sudden we're investing in this platform for years and years and years, and we want to pivot, but we have all these licensing costs and we have all these investments we've already made.

And so, how do we find business agility? Which is funny, cause that's actually how we define composability at Bounteous – it gives you business agility. But, going back to the DXP, it's like, how do we find that agility? How do we invest in the things that won't change? 

Having flexibility with your business and being able to do things based on what the market is doing and what your clients are asking for, and some new insight that you may have found – like, that 30% more people will use curbside that have never heard of your organization, going back to the Shake Shack example. That comes from having flexibility with your architecture, with your technology; and again, not that it's impossible to still get there. But sometimes just being first is enough to push you towards looking at open technologies and open platforms.

Tim Butara: Le'Rhone, this was an awesome conversation, just as we knew that it would be. I'm sure that it will also be very valuable to a lot of our listeners, as we said in the beginning, who are maybe going through similar issues, who are maybe looking to transform but are having budget issues or some other issues. Great conversation. Just before we wrap it up and jump off the call, Le'Rhone, if people wanted to maybe reach out to you or learn more about you, learn more about Bounteous, where can they do all that?

Le'Rhone Walker: Sure. You can learn all about us at bounteous.com. I speak a lot, so I'm all over the place, lerhonewalker.com. You can always find me there, I'm on Twitter, and I'm pretty much Le'Rhone Walker everywhere – if there's a Le'Rhone Walker, it likely is this guy right here. But bounteous.com is probably the best place to find all the information related to Bounteous and some of what we talked about, too, with co-innovation and the way that we think and approach projects.

Tim Butara: Awesome. I'll make sure to include everything in the show notes. Le'Rhone, thanks again, this has been awesome.

Le'Rhone Walker: Awesome. Thank you so much for having me, fantastic conversation.

Tim Butara: Well, to our listeners, that's all for this episode. Have a great day, everyone, and stay safe.

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