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We would like to introduce you to Davie Street Enterprises (DSE). DSE is a fictitious 100-year-old multinational corporation that is beginning its digital transformation journey. In this post we will lay the groundwork for a series following DSE as an illustration of how some Red Hat customers are preparing for and succeeding at digital transformation to save money, become more efficient, and compete more effectively.

The company isn't real, but its struggle is very real for many organizations. Throughout this series, we will explore the business problems any number of organizations are challenged with and how DSE, with the help of Red Hat and its partners, plan to solve those problems. To start, let’s learn more about DSE, its business, and some of the associates involved in its digital transformation journey. 

What's the situation?

DSE was founded in 1920 in the small farming town of Timbuktu, Ohio. While they were not the first producer of widgets, they came into the market with a unique approach that caught the eye of many consumers. 

As the appeal for their widgets grew so did the company. Within four years it expanded its presence to Nightrider, NC. One of its greatest early successes was not only weathering the Great Depression but coming out as the market leader of widgets in North America. 

Over the years DSE has expanded across North America with offices and plants in the US and Canada. In 1972, DSE went international by opening a plant in Beijing, China in the Gansu province as well as another plant in Ferrytale, Ogun, Nigeria. 

In 1997 DSE opened its first office in Europe which opened a new market for its widgets. By 2007 DSE had become the single largest producer of widgets in the world and was growing at unprecedented rates. This is where the fairytale ends.

Drowning in technical debt

As demand grew they began to have trouble keeping up with orders. Constant manufacturing pipeline problems have led to delays in reaching the market over the more recent years. Specifically, their order system was not able to scale when spikes occurred in demand leading to loss of orders and a decline in customer confidence.  

Additionally, many older monolithic applications were not capable of much needed integrations leading to a huge amount of manual work which only led to more delays and errors. This opened the door for their two largest competitors to step in. Both competitors have drastically improved their widgets and are beginning to take large chunks of market share from DSE. 

If that wasn’t enough, a new startup has introduced the concept of "virtual widgets" (VWs) which is disrupting the widget market. The straw that finally broke the camel's back was the website outage of 2020 which lasted for 46 hours due to multiple factors and root causes. 

Between poor application design, lack of proper load balances, and the inability to scale to meet increasing demand, DSE’s IT department is struggling to stay afloat  and has no time to innovate. The more people they hire to try to solve the problem, the worse the situation becomes. They are drowning in technical debt. 

What’s next?

It's clear that DSE faces three main business problems that need to be solved for the survival of the company:

  1. Streamline operations to ensure that products can be produced and delivered in a timely manner. 

  2. Find a way to innovate new methods to deliver the widget and not fall behind their competitors. 

  3. Reduce the technical debt that has been acquired over the years without impacting current production.

DSE has more than 20,000 employees in various capacities across the globe. Through the course of this series you will have the opportunity to meet some of them. These characters at DSE have their work cut out for them in the coming months.

As we follow DSE on their digital transformation journey, you will learn about real life use cases covering Red Hat technologies such as Red Hat OpenShift, Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform, Red Hat Enterprise Linux,  and more. 

We will also highlight some of our strategic partners and how together we can help organizations achieve digital transformation. Stay tuned as we follow DSE and its relatable personalities through the struggles and successes of their effort.


About the author

David Rojas is a leader with a demonstrated history of working in the information technology and services industry. He has a history in operations management, business development, IT service Management, and IT strategy. Rojas joined Red Hat in May 2019.