Digital Transformation

What is Digital Transformation?

Digital Transformation (DT) refers to the adoption of digital technology in the processes and culture of an organization to meet changing requirements and improve customer experiences. CIO’s Clint Boulton describes it as “a foundational change in how an organization delivers value to its customers.”

The process involves a variety of up-to-date tools and processes designed to help businesses solve their problems and satisfy customers. It represents a realization of how the use of technology, as well as of processes and people, can improve business performance.

Why Digital Transformation is Important

We are fully in the digital age. Businesses need to do things more with this realization now than ever. Digital transformation entails a necessary reevaluation of how business is done and how customer engagement takes place.

The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of this process all the more. Little wonder then that more companies are gearing up their DT efforts despite seeming budget concerns.

Digital technologies are causing disruptions and changing the look of the business landscape. Companies that want to remain relevant and not shed their market share are giving them greater attention – so should you. As an example, more retailers are using digital tools in their operations seeing what Amazon has done and is doing.

Finding Success with Digital Transformation

This process comes with some level of uncertainty. You make changes and may also have to readjust them along the way.

Evidence shows that companies are revving up their DT efforts, but sadly these are often off the target. Researchers, for example, have found that as high as 70 percent of spending on initiatives amount to waste – they fail to attain their goals.

Here are a few quick tips to help you get this process right:

1. Think about your business goals – You should first put before you the goals that your business wants to achieve. Consider the business outcome you’re looking to attain for your customers. This should influence your DT objectives and what tools to use.

2. Bring IT into decisions – Strive to ensure that decisions relating to digital transformation are made together by both the business and its IT team. You don’t just bring in the tech guys when you need to fix an issue. They should be seen instead as co-creators in solving for customers.

3. Seek customers’ opinions – Since practically everything is (or should be) about the customer, ensure to seek their thoughts. Use tools such as surveys, interviews, and focus groups to learn what you’re doing well or they wish you can do better. This is a very crucial step especially when you’re looking to improve customer experience.

4. Be agile – It helps to adopt the Agile mindset, seeing that DT involves uncertainty. This enables you to adapt and make decisions more quickly. Encourage employees to make decisions that may involve elements of risk, learn from them, and improve.

5. Keep faith with employees – Organizations sometimes make the mistake of hiring other people when thinking of digital transformation. These individuals may bring solutions that work elsewhere and might not fit your business. You should consider working with your current staff, more knowledgeable about how things work. Your employees may be more likely to come up with better solutions based on their interactions with customers.

Key Digital Transformation Roles

To leverage current employees effectively, they must have the necessary skills. You should have the right people. Among the important people you may need are:

  • Enterprise data architects
  • Data scientists
  • Cloud computing specialists
  • Software engineers
  • Database administrators
  • Information security officers
  • Product managers
  • Forensic analysts

The above is not an exhaustive list. Other important roles include user experience (UX) designers, brand strategists, and even writers.

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