“The biggest part of our digital transformation is changing the way we think” by Simeon Preston.
The Intersection of Digital Transformation and Strategy: Unlocking Business Success
This quote highlights an influential factor that goes into digital transformation, which is “mindset”. Digital transformation is not just about getting access to the technology, but it’s also about having a forward-thinking mindset and company culture.
Moreover, digitalization is almost entirely ineffective without the right outlook that drives it. Almost every business is digital, especially in today’s period. But the real question is how will you transform a business that started before the internet, so it can survive and prosper in this digital economy. Read further to know what digital transformation means and the strategies and steps for its successful implementation in an organization.
What is Digital Transformation?
The term “digital transformation” can be defined as adopting the digital technology for the transformation of services for businesses, by either replacing the non-digital or manual processes with digital processes or replacing the old technology with the latest one. Moreover, it can also be interpreted as the process which makes the use of digital technology to create new or modify the existing culture, processes, and customer experiences of an organization to meet its changing and required demands.
This specific re-imagination of an organization in this digital era is called digital transformation. It is a foundational change in how an organization delivers value to its consumers. Already being a key strategic initiative, it has taken intensified importance, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. It also focuses on how managers can reorient their organization for a digital era and drive such kind of deep shift that is necessary to secure a future in this digital era.
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The Strategy of Digital Transformation
The strategy of digital transformation can be defined as a plan of action that describes how a business must strategically reposition itself in a digital economy. As the habits of customer keep changing, so does the businesses operate. To apply the digital transformation in an organization, it should regularly innovate, change its operating and business models along with leveraging the emerging technology. The strategy concentrates on the use of technology to improve the performance of an organization, whether it means the creation of new products or the re-imagination of current processes. The strategy helps to specify the direction of an organization that will lead it to create new and competitive advantages with technology, along with the tactics and methods that it will use to achieve those changes.
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In the present times, technology has integrated with business to become something more than hardware or software. As digital technology is continuing to become more pervasive, and companies are moving further in the journey of digital transformation, the use of digital strategy is increasing day by day. Furthermore, it is important to remember that the strategy of digital transformation is both a concept and a thing as well, meaning that it will allow an organization to create a concrete plan or road map upon which it can walk to digitally transform itself using a beneficial strategy.
Steps for Successful Digital Transformation
As the year 2020 has ended and business entrepreneurs are looking forward to 2021 to drive their business’s improvement, it is now clear that digital transformation is here to stay for a long time. Entrepreneurs can make use of digital transformation to pull the right cards for their business by using proper strategies. Here is the list of 10 steps for successful digital transformation in the year 2021-
1. Collect a Right Team
People are considered as an important asset in any organization, and so behind a successful digital transformation of a company. You should wisely choose your team by not only evaluating their skill set, but you should also make sure that your team has the right level of training and knowledge to keep up with the new challenges. For a benefitted digital transformation of your organization, you should be able to surround yourself with a dedicated group of digitally competent experts and assign them the roles.
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2. Right Infrastructure for Right Transformation
Collecting the right infrastructure is very important for an organization. Infrastructure components interact through networks, services, and applications as well. Full-fledged transformations can only be attained with sufficient infrastructure that is capable of handling the latest evolving technologies. Infrastructure plays a key role in obtaining seamless procedures across various platforms.
3. Get Leadership in Order
This is a major key to succeed with the help of digital transformation is to have the right leaders in place who can set a vision and a path on which the organization can walk upon. The leaders should have a clear understanding of both the business strategies and digital technology and how to make proper use of them. Successful digital leaders should find various ways to encourage their team members for taking on different challenges and be able to take risks while knowing that everything the team would do won’t be successful. Thus, leaders and leadership are very important aspects for digital transformation to be successful in an organization.
4. Formulate and Align Strategy
Successful digital transformation requires a technique that goes beyond IT’s vision of what technology one should implement. Instead, it should answer the question of how the use of technology would help any organization to deliver a unique product or offering to the marketplace. In today’s era, the rate of innovation and technology has been exponentially higher than ever, which has made it a challenge to develop an IT strategy. The success factor of a significant digital transformation is to reassess the roadmap on which you’re going in 2-3 years to ensure that the IT strategy you are using is still relevant.
5. Put Data in Work
The initiatives of digital transformation often involve analyzing huge amounts of structured and non-structured data to gain rapid insights. The organizations can then use these specific insights to inform digitalization priorities and strategies as well. Process improvement is one important factor of digital transformation, but greater value is found in the incorporation of big data into the mix, which includes IoT data from various devices, phones, and machine sensors as well. This will enable a wider net of automation across all operations along with the opportunity to drive new efficiencies and business models.
6. Form an “A” Team
For having intended digital transformation outcomes, an organization should bring together its institutional knowledge and strong process-oriented skill-set. There are many ways for an organization to digitally transform itself, but only some of them result in your desired outcomes that are driven by transformations and are adopted by an organization with the appropriate combination of skill-set. Only having a team with people wouldn’t work for you, so make sure your team can perform in a better way that would profit you and your organization.
7. Maximize Investment Value
Funding decisions related to digital transformation projects tend to vary among organizations. However, due to the global pandemic, new demands have been placed on work environments, while driving faster overall digital transformation, particularly when it comes to technologies that enable remote work. Moreover, there are IT departments that deal with expanded pressures to cut costs. Because of this dual dynamic, another successful factor of digital transformation is that organizations thoroughly evaluate the value of initiatives for ensuring maximum investment value and returns.
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8. Stick to Your Goal But, With Slight Changes
With the rapidly changing business environment, many new technologies are being adopted by various organizations. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll have to adopt every change to keep up with it. Make sure you stick to your path in the goal of digital transformation and only make changes that your business requires and which won’t affect your original goal too much.
9. Use Social Media Platforms
Social media is a significant factor for digital transformation. You should try to engage with your customers through social media by sharing intriguing content and data that can attract them. They will help you to know what’s trending in the market and what type of products do the customers crave. Social media also allows you to directly interact with your customers and take feedback about your products.
10. Keep the Process Going
Even after the process of digital transformation is all set and done, don’t forget that it is an ongoing process. Thus, to ensure that your organization maintains a high level of usability, you should keep it as an open-minded project. You should keep yourself informed on the latest technological developments while being in harmony with the needs and requests of your team.
Implementing digital transformation is a “must” thing for organizations, especially in this highly competitive business environment, like we have today. But you should keep in mind that success would only come to you if you build a solid foundation for the digital improvement of your business, surround yourself with favorable technologies, and have the right team to work with.
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