Digital Transformation is a hot topic of late. While many organizations have already embarked on transformation, others are struggling to get it off the ground.
Research shared last year by Siemens showed that 29% of businesses in Ireland have no defined digital transformation strategy, 43% of firms have a defined strategy for portions of their business and less than 30% have a strategy for the whole of their organisation.
Why is Digital Transformation So Important?
The Digital Age is upon us and it is not just about technology. In 1998, Kodak had 170,000 employees and sold 85% of all photo paper worldwide. Within just a few years, their business model disappeared and they went bankrupt. In 2008 Blockbuster Video revenue was 8 billion USD, in 2010 it went bankrupt.
Nokia was the undisputed king of the cell phone market with one billion customers in 2007 and 51% of the global market share. Unfortunately, although Nokia’s phone architecture was cumbersome and outdated, the company persisted with it. This short-sightedness allowed Nokia’s competitors to develop iOS and Android operating systems and capture a huge portion of Nokia’s market. By the time Nokia phones offered Android, the company had been left behind.
What happened to Kodak, Blockbuster Video and Nokia will happen in a lot of industries in the next 10 years and, most people won’t see it coming.
Disruptive technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Robotic Process Automation, Blockchain, Natural Language Generation, Machine and Deep Learning, 3D printing coupled with changing customer behaviour and external environmental factors, have dramatically altered our business landscape.
Disruptive technology, in business, refers to an innovation that has the potential to replace existing technologies and systems. Such technology can drastically change market behavior, operations, and social or economic norms.
History teaches us that no one is safe in the free market. New, flexible business models, continuous innovation, and digital transformation are needed to be implemented rapidly, not just to leverage the opportunities brought by new technological advancements, but simply to survive and stay relevant.
Yet, so many companies fail to get it right.
What is Digital Transformation?
Digital transformation means, in layman terms, employing digital technology to optimize the ways of doing business, deliver new value to customers and drive company growth.
It is not just about the digitisation of assets, procuring a CRM, building a new website, or automating an old process; it is a major change in how an organisation conducts its business and delivers value to its customers. It’s about taking a step back and revisiting everything you do, from business models, governance and internal systems to customer interactions, and everything in between.
It requires a major shift in leadership and company culture, the encouragement of innovation and creation of new business models, strong customer focus, digitization of assets, and increased use of technology to improve the experience of your organisation’s employees, customers, suppliers, partners, and stakeholders.
Embarking on a digital transformation journey opens the company up to new opportunities, but at the same time, it also opens it up to new risks. The biggest challenge is not digital technology, but issues around company culture, leadership, changes to the business model, strategy, and company capabilities.
Research shows that many companies don’t undertake digital transformation because they don’t know how to do it, or they don’t understand it. Many executives still view digital transformation as doing the same thing but doing it better and faster. They don’t fully consider the threats and opportunities presented by disruptive technologies and they don’t know how to respond to them.
For a transformation to be successful, it needs to be holistic and follow a proven transformation methodology such as BTM2 which covers the following 9 management disciplines:
- Meta Management
- Strategy Management
- Value Management
- Risk Management
- Business Process Management
- IT Transformation Management
- Organisational Change Management
- Competence and Learning Management
- Project and Programme Management
The 4 Ps of Digital Transformation
Digital Transformation requires significant investment in new products, processes, people and technology platforms.
Your products need to evolve to take advantage of emerging technologies such as Blockchain, Biometrics, AI, AR, Voice-activated transactions, Touch E-commerce, and the growing sophistication of consumers.
People have to transform to facilitate new technologies, new types of software, new security issues, and new ways of interacting. Your company culture needs to change to continually challenge the status quo, experiment often, and get comfortable with failure.
Your processes need to evolve to make the customer experience the focus of everything the business does and it doesn’t just include marketing and sales.
And finally, your technology platforms need to deliver the expected customer experience, create new ecosystems, support the back-office operations and be agile enough to quickly integrate with emerging technology solutions.
Digital Transformation – How can we help?
Get Ahead Consulting can help you with the following aspects of digital transformation :
- strategic business analysis
- customer-centric business process re-engineering,
- innovative digital product design
- digital project management