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August 5, 2018
What do we mean by digital transformation? It can be described as "the profound transformation of business and organizational activities, processes, competencies, and models to fully leverage... a mix of digital technologies and their accelerating impact... in a strategic and prioritized way, with present and future shifts in mind." This suggests two important things about digital transformation: 1. that it is not purely about technology, and 2. that it is a journey, rather than a destination. Here are 5 things you should consider during your organization's digital transformation journey:
The work is never done, but that's not a bad thing!
According to Kerry Dawes, Head of Digital Experience & Intel at The Rank Group, aiming to be “transformed” by a digital transformation is aiming for an unattainable unicorn. Instead, you should view transformation as a racehorse: something that you need to train, invest in, feed the right fuel and breed from. Transformation is a job that never truly ends but which allows an organization to keep iterating and improving as new opportunities and challenges arise. Digital technologies and an innovative culture are what will allow an organization to continuously change and adapt.
Don't be afraid to experiment, but base your decisions on data
If you're aiming for a major target like double-digit growth, you're going to have to do something drastically different from what you do now. It will take time to understand what works and you won't get it right every time. The ability to evaluate what works and what doesn't and reiterate with continuous improvement will get you there gradually. It's essential to have good visibility of your data in one central place so you can make informed decisions without relying solely on experience and hunches.
The digital transformation journey is as much about people and culture as it is about technology. According to Forrester, "Digital transformation requires an overhaul of your entire business: from culture to leadership, skills, and even business models." Jabil’s 2018 Digital Transformation Trends Survey found that 74% of respondents felt that cultural and organizational changes were the most challenging part of a transformation.
People will have to learn to evolve as quickly as technology does so the business can stay relevant and competitive. An important aim of your digital transformation journey should be to foster a "learning culture" that enables and encourages people to embrace change and evolve with changing technology.
Don't forget about processes
Changing technology goes hand in hand with changing processes. Having a clear understanding of your current processes and architecture before you begin is essential to success. You need to spend as much time on processes as you do on technology as they are just as important to achieving your transformation goals. For example, if you move applications to the cloud but retain rigid processes around the use of servers, your business will not be taking advantage of the bandwidth flexibility that the cloud provides.
Connectivity is as important as the tools themselves
Invest in connectivity. There will be key tools you need to implement throughout the digital transformation journey that will help growth. However, you also need to focus on joining them together. Disconnected tools will lead to complexity, siloed information and the need to buy more tools to fix more problems that arise. Getting the right tools is only half the battle - integrations between them will create even greater value and remove complexity.
Using Cutover during your digital transformation journey allows you to:
Get full visibility of all change planned or taking place across the enterprise
Link technology changes to business outcomes and allows the business to change processes in tandem with technology changes