Balancing Digital Transformation: Strategy, Process and Technology

Balancing Digital Transformation Strategy_ Process and Technology-01

Digital transformation doesn’t have a set beginning or end point. Technology and customer behaviors are continually evolving. Successful organizations must adopt a culture that can grow and change with the industry. When an organization has a narrow focus on technology, it can be a recipe for failure.

Buying technology for the sake of having it, in the absence of change management, process, or strategy, will ultimately be a very expensive failure. On the other hand, embarking on a new operating process or hiring for new skill sets without a greater strategy or technology capability present will lead to disruption of the company culture, and employees will burn out before any momentum can be gained. There is a better way and one that can both empower the organization and gain better alignment at the top.

Digital transformation has three key pillars defined as:

  • Strategy and alignment, which is the agreed upon future state vision to deliver more integrated experiences and communications
  • Data and technology, means the information and capabilities needed to attain the future state vision
  • People and process, that includes the way of working to drive and deliver the customer-centric experiences

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None of these pillars are more important than the other, and throughout the organization, the guidelines for each of these need not be the same. A balance between these needs to be established for a successful project of transformation. Digital transformation involves much more than using new technologies or redesigning a reporting structure. Digital transformation basically changes the way an organization uses technology, people, and processes to improve business performance and bring about a set strategy to achieve the vision of the future state.

Strategy

Given the iterative nature of digital transformation, it is important to first get an idea and align the organization’s goals. An effective digital conversion strategy should incorporate a framework that needs to be followed throughout this ever-evolving process. It is very important to identify the end objective in order to make it easier to set KPIs and measure progress along the way.

A well-thought-out strategy will also address the impact that change will have on customers and employees. Usually when the process begins, the transition intentions only focus on the customer (understandably, as in the end this is about driving money). Recognizing what is best for the customer by understanding their needs and requirements is important, but ensuring that the strategy incorporates an in-depth knowledge of the work, will ultimately will lead to success.

Data and technology

A sound data strategy can share insights to create a strong progressive vision for transformation. The organization must ensure that not only does IT make technology decisions with an open mind, but that all departments must work together on informed decision-making.

The best way to create a technical road map is to look at the needs and identify the skills needed for both internal and external forces to deliver a strategy.

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People and process

Major change requires a double focus on digital technology and organizational culture. To be successful, leaders must consider the implications. Some of the barriers to consider include company culture and leadership that reluctant to change. Before deciding on a road map and solution, it is best to seek the advice of all our internal partners. Understanding all aspects of business acumen issues and providing practical solutions is essential to ensure that all parties feel that their needs are understood and to establish diverse support. It is important for a company leadership to be involved from the beginning and they feel that their concerns are being handled properly. Having these conversations with team members about future changes is a priority before making any part of digital transformation. Explaining to employees how this change will impact the way they work and ensuring that they can continue to do their job is important to increase credibility and make people happy with the digital transformation program.

Business leaders who embrace transformation have to consider these three pillars and be willing to innovate, experiment, and communicate with their organizations to make the shift – and in the long run, be agile and flexible in the face of what’s next.

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Swapnil Mishra is a Business News Reporter with OnDot Media. She is a journalism graduate with 5+ years of experience in journalism and mass communication. Previously Swapnil has worked with media outlets like NewsX, MSN, and News24.