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“Let’s go digital,” the world calls and it sounds like a call of duty. And that is exactly what many organizations do. Taking up digital initiatives, following the path of digital innovation, setting up digital businesses, embracing artificial intelligence and using new technologies on a daily basis — all these seem to be crucial elements of almost every company’s operating activity. And on top of that is digital transformation, the buzzword of the digital age, but still, the mystery term for a number of business leaders.
What is digital transformation then? How to successfully carry it out in your company? If these are the questions that keep bothering you, read on and let me offer you some answers.
Digital transformation is defined as the process of incorporating tech-based solutions into your business strategies in order to reshape your business processes so that you are better able to adjust to the changing requirements of the market, improve efficiency and cater to your customers’ needs.
This includes not only discovering new capabilities and identifying areas of potential growth, but also challenging your existing processes, analyzing the effectiveness of your interaction with customers and instantly reacting to any indication of your company’s underperformance.
A successful digital transformation requires a deep understanding of how to use digital technologies effectively. In other words, if you intend to implement more technologies just for the sake of it, your business will not necessarily benefit. Only if you thoroughly evaluate your business needs and goals with the aim of choosing the right tools will you be able to get the most out of technology and make your company better suit the new reality.
Your organization’s digital transformation needs a good strategy to ensure the ultimate success of the whole endeavor. You can think of it as a digital transformation journey that requires both good preparation and proper equipment. What you should definitely have before starting such a journey is a good map showing where you currently are (your company’s status quo), your destination (all business goals you desire to achieve) and the surest route to this destination (the best possible tools to accomplish what you want).
A vast majority of knowledgeable IT leaders and chief digital officers know that if you want a real digital change that will help build your business value, you need to adopt a holistic view of all the efforts needed to introduce digital transformation initiatives and pave the path for new business models.
That having been said, you may still be wondering what are the key factors of a successful business transformation and what steps you need to take to carry it out. Here are some tips.
First of all, you have to look deeply into your business strategy and define your goals and expected business outcomes. Engage your key employees in preparing a list of questions and try to answer them together in order to get a wider perspective and better assess which areas of your business need improvement. For example, why do you need a digital transformation in the first place? What exactly do you want to achieve? Do you need to encourage revenue growth or upgrade legacy systems? Do you need to develop a digital platform in order to establish a stronger relationship with your customers? What does data say?
Sorting out your priorities combined with looking at how your competitors are using technology will help you explore what digital tools and digital skills you are going to need to take your business to the next level.
However, if you are not capable of addressing such questions on your own, there are experts who provide board advisory services that prove to be very beneficial for companies seeking some assistance in strategy planning.
Although external consultants and business analytics specialists have in-depth knowledge about a variety of aspects related to digital transformations, you need to remember that they are not familiar with the specific practices and strategies implemented in your company. That is why, apart from relying on their professional expertise, you should also involve the insiders in the process of channeling your digital transformation efforts, choosing the best approach and evaluating whether suggested solutions have the potential to be effective.
What goes without saying is that customer experience is a crucial factor that should drive the digital transformation process of any company that focuses on enhancing the way they respond to the needs, expectations or priorities of various stakeholders, i.e. customers in the widest sense. Thus customer centricity may play one of the key roles in your own transformation project. If you collect reliable data on how satisfied with your products or services people are and if you draw accurate conclusions from your observations, you are more likely to fill in some gaps in your business process. One way to do this is via digital channels, among which social media stands out as an especially powerful tool when it comes to both gaining useful feedback from customers and interacting with them on a more personal level.
The right mindset of employees is another key element of successful transformations in companies. If you aim to inspire your staff and make them fully aware of the significance of changes that you want to introduce, you have to show them you are equally engaged in the whole process. Make sure your workers are not skeptical or discouraged due to a lack of a good role model or proper understanding of what is expected of them and why — show them your own motivation and share your visions so that you can have a strong team of goal-oriented people. You can achieve this by holding and attending regular meetings during which your employees can deliver updates, provide feedback on changing customer expectations or brainstorm new ideas on how to shape new behaviors or improve some aspects of the organizational culture.
What is more, as digital transformation leaders should be very alert to what is happening in the workplace environment, they also need to be able to recognize fears among the staff. If you are the leader of the transformation process, check whether your employees are not anxious about the possibility of losing their jobs. In that case, you have to convince them that embracing business innovation does not mean they will become redundant; on the contrary, adopting new technologies or pursuing new business models may help them reach a higher degree of expertise and acquire a new set of skills.
Digital transformation is a multi-faceted process that needs to be well thought-out before any vital and business-changing decisions are made. It is worth remembering that even though adopting digital technology is not the ultimate goal of the process, it can be a useful means of reshaping your business and making it more future-proof.
Silicon Cities and its qualified specialists can help you go through any process that requires the improvement of your management business strategy and more effective project execution.
Share your company growth expectations with us and our business consultants will help you with the right strategy! Contact us today to get a quote.
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