With the constantly growing popularity of digital technology, the term "digital transformation" has become one of the most searched keywords in recent years. According to the latest data from the Hootsuite Digital Report 2022, the number of people who do not use the internet has fallen below 3 billion. This means that digital access is becoming more widespread over time. This is a significant trend that businesses should take note of, as it will likely lead to changes in customer behaviour.
What is Digital Transformation
Digital Transformation can be explained as transforming everything into digital things. But it's not just about that, it's about a fundamental change in how the organisation or business operates, communicates, and engages with customers. From a more specific point of view, Digital Transformation means combining innovative technologies into several aspects of life including business, from strategic things to the operation and distribution itself. From a business perspective, digital transformation requires a new mindset from the company itself. A fresh, digitised mindset will guide the whole process through each stage.
As consumers move more of their lives online, companies must prioritise becoming digital businesses in order to remain successful. There are several reasons for this. First, many interactions that used to take place in the physical world are now happening online. This includes things like communicating with customers and other stakeholders. Additionally, people are now used to interacting with the world in digital ways and they expect companies to keep up with these changes.
What Does Digital Transformation Bring Around?
Digital Transformation is all about change. It's about taking what's working and making it better. It's about bringing new ideas and technologies into your business to make it more efficient, more profitable, and more customer-focused.
With transformation comes change, and that's no different when it comes to digital transformation. Every facet of the company will be touched in some way, whether it's big or small. The goal of businesses is to satisfy customers and that will continue to be the case with digital transformation. Customer behaviour will play a role in how companies make changes so that they can better serve their audiences. Having the right mindset within the company is key to making this happen.
As digital transformation changes the way companies do business, the connecting dots will also change. MIT Sloan Management Review highlights three key areas of digital transformation that will be important connected dots of the company's growth.
Customer Experience - is about understanding your customers better and using technology to help them grow. By understanding your customers better, you can adapt to their needs and create a better experience for them. Technology can help you do this by providing data and insights that you can use to improve your customer experience.
Operational processes - is about making things run smoothly within a company. This can be done by automating certain processes, providing digital tools, and collecting data to monitor performance. By streamlining internal processes, a company can function more efficiently and effectively.
Business model - is a tool that helps businesses change and improve their approach to digital tools and services. This is based on the development results of the previous two points.
Challenges in Digital Transformation Era
The changes that have occurred in recent years have brought with them a number of challenges. Just as with food, the more complex the flavour, the more challenging it can be to please everyone. That's what's happened with the digital transformation era. With more technology and improvements, we've gotten a lot of benefits - but also a lot of challenges.
It's easy to get caught up in the goals of a Digital Transformation and forget about the strategy and preparation required to reach those goals. An effective digital transformation strategy should include a focus on people, processes, and technology. People are the most important part of any digital transformation initiative - without buy-in and engagement from employees, any digital transformation is destined to fail. Processes need to be aligned with the new digital goal, and technology must be selected and implemented carefully to support the desired outcomes.
As we work to grow the digital transformation, these are a few challenges we need to keep in mind and overcome:
Weak Change Management Strategy
Having ambition for growth is a great thing for a business, but sometimes hasty decision-making can create issues further down the line. That's why an effective change management strategy is essential. This involves taking the time to plan things out and identify the root cause of any potential problems. Only then can you make decisions that will lead to positive change for your company.
High Evolution of Customer Needs
The digital era is very dynamic, and customer behaviour changes rapidly. Digital Transformation is a complex and lengthy process, often taking years to complete. In the midst of the Digital Age, customer needs may also change over time. Businesses should be prepared with multiple contingency plans to apply new strategies based on that sudden change.
Lack of Digital Transformation Strategy
Confusion about what steps to take next is common when a business is undergoing lots of changes. Before starting the transformation process, it's important to answer several basic questions and have a good strategy in place. Without a predetermined strategy, the transformation is likely to be unsuccessful.
Digital transformation can be costly for businesses, as it often involves research, planning, and implementation costs. As such, a clear understanding of the goals of the transformation is key to budgeting for each stage of the process. By understanding the goals, businesses can ensure that the right amount of resources are allocated to each stage, and avoid overspending on unnecessary aspects.
Culture & Mindset
Businesses that have relied heavily on manual processes in the past often have a more traditional mindset. One of the biggest challenges of digital transformation is changing the culture inside the organisation, from leaders to employees. Everyone must be on board and ready to process big changes in the company.
Growing Alongside the Digital Transformation
Kicking off a digital transformation can be a daunting task, but it's important to remember that it's a process, not a final destination. Most companies will need to shift away from traditional thinking and move towards a more collaborative, experimental approach. By taking on the challenges head-on, you can set your company up for success.
While digital transformation can present a number of challenges, there are a few strategies that can help overcome them:
Align Business Goals with Digital Transformation Strategy
In order to successfully complete a digital transformation, it is important that the process aligns with the company's core business goals. This will help to avoid any confusion or issues that might arise during the transformation. By having a clear understanding of the goals and objectives from the outset, the company will be able to map out a clear path forward and stay on track throughout the process.
Create a Strong Leadership Team
We should admire those who are working on Digital Transformation. They had to put on several different hats to play their part in this huge project. Those who are influential, innovative, and trustworthy need to be formed as change-maker leaders. With this strategy, we can bring a cross-functional team consisting of these high performers to create a strong leadership team that can be pointed to the main goal and the best way to achieve it. This team will help the business create a vision for the digital transformation process that aligns with the business goals.
In today's digital age, it is essential for businesses to undergo digital transformation in order to stay competitive. Whether a business is ready or not, digital transformation will be its path forward in this dynamic age. This is why it is important for businesses to be prepared with the right strategies and possibilities for adaptation.
Contact us to help propelling your business into the Digital Age.