/ Domo’s CSO compares Covid-19 to Y2K in popular podcast

COVID-19 will do more to accelerate digital transformation than any C-level initiative has done to date.

That’s John Mellor’s belief, at least. And who’s to argue? After all, Domo’s chief strategy officer not only has been a business leader for 32 years, he’s got a good memory—which is to say he sees clear parallels between this moment and the one that led up to Y2K more than two decades ago.

“If you think back to the late ‘90s, ERP (enterprise resource planning) was a bold-if-not-risky proposition for companies,” John recalled during the latest episode of The Official SaaStr Podcast, which was recorded earlier this week and is now available on Apple Podcasts and SoundCloud.

“But as you got closer to Y2K, the potential impact of that event drove a massive acceleration in ERP adoption. The market grew four- or five-fold from 1995-2000 because people got out of the intellectualizing of what technology could do to them or for them and into the sheer business need to compete or survive. And that’s where we are now.”

In his 30-minute interview with startup and venture capitalist expert Harry Stebbings, John also talked about why speed is so important for businesses right now.

“If you’re a line-of-business leader, you absolutely have to be able to make decisions quickly in this environment,” John said. “But decision making is a function of information, and if you don’t have up-to-date information at your fingertips, you are flying blind.

“Access to real-time data is key. With it, you can be agile, and you can understand things very rapidly.”

With more than 245,000 subscribers and some of the most prominent operators and investors from the world of SaaS serving as guests each week, The Official SaaStr Podcast regularly features among Apple’s top investing podcasts and in its “What’s Hot” section.

To hear John’s entire conversation with Harry—which also covered the challenges to digital transformation implementation, the role of leadership in a time of crisis, and how a 100% virtual event environment will impact physical events when and if they do come back—click here for the iTunes version or here for the SoundCloud version.

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