Darwinism rules business. Rapidly-developing technologies disrupt the market at every level. During digital transformation, many companies continue to find it difficult to understand ways to begin or sustain the process which could give them the desired results to deliver the best for their customers. Customer experience is one of the most-critical experiences an enterprise should strive to achieve.
A report by Forrester, ‘Six Steps to Become a Digital Business’, states, “A company should be considered part of a dynamic ecosystem of value that connects digital resources inside and outside the company as needed to compete. Digital technologies should be harnessed, both to deliver a superior customer experience and to drive the agility and operational efficiency you need to stay competitive.”
Most companies seek digital transformation for competitive advantage.
Process to digital transformation
IDC, a provider of market intelligence and advisory services, forecasts, companies’ abilities to spend on digital technologies would touch USD 1.3 trillion this year and USD 2.1 trillion by 2021.
While companies transform their business by investing in relevant capabilities, tracking the real-time value being generated is important.
Technological transformation is not about technological innovations and business disruptions, but includes adopting the innovations and realizing their value-add. Companies need to develop the skills for harnessing the potential of transformations.
In the corporate sense, it is about aligning work processes to achieve the set goal of delivering distinctive customer experience and change management.
Entities to be transformed
The technological advancements have a bearing on how businesses operate. They need to be more realistic, in real-time, and they need to have a new framework and find practical applications.
But, it is essential for new technologies to be embraced with a compelling narrative, helping businesses evolve. Along with a well-conceived strategy, digital transformation should be a synergy of people, process and technology.
A course correction
Transformation is slow and requires a huge focus on change management. Adopting the right technologies, re-skilling, running a company within a process framework, and creating a culture of co-creation.
1) Charting technology roadmaps
The rapidly-evolving technologies are game-changers. They enable productivity and companies to offer smarter solutions for clients to stay ahead.
“While considering people, there has to be a synchronized top-down alignment, including the right executive sponsorship, strong program governance and execution during change management.”
Hence, the challenge for an IT leader is about choosing between the tactical and the strategic. In the digital era, technological advancements are rapid. It is important to justify the precise time to invest in a trend. These are decisions an IT leader has to get right.
While companies invest in innovations to make the best of the opportunities and secure a competitive advantage, the implementation should be economical. Keeping in mind the scalability of technology, companies should look for partnerships with startups for added advantage.
Digitalization comes with the challenges of protecting data and maintaining customer trust. Overhauling data strategy and governance ensure that data is reliable, accessible, and enriched continuously.
We need an approach to find solutions to traditional problems in technology and, thus, integrate it with every area of operations.
Some pointers this holistic approach include are:
• Developing technology roadmaps strategically focusing on investments for reinventing legacy businesses and creating new-age ones
• Creating a modern technological environment supporting the rapid development of solutions
• Investing in disruptive technologies for competitive advantage
• Look at an integrated technology ecosystem -- Strong foundational transaction systems, scalable infrastructure, analytical platforms, digital solutions, and user-experience solutions; and
• Investing in innovations for future possibilities
2) Driving change management - People and Process
Digital transformation is more than the mere adoption of the latest technologies. We need to target capturing strategic value by driving change management in the operating model, including people and processes. Change management requires commitment throughout to be able to play a role and have the desired impact -- it is not an ad-hoc quick-fix solution. When properly understood and applied, change management is a key enabler to a successful change.
Change management is continuous and requires commitment. Change is time-consuming as employees need to adopt and implement it.
Automation, AI, and globalization are transforming the workplace. But, who ensures every employee has the skills for adapting to an evolving workspace? While considering people, there has to be a synchronized top-down alignment, including the right executive sponsorship, strong program governance and execution during change management. A McKinsey report states, when key people are more involved, a transformation will succeed.
During the digital journey, process improvement is a catalyst as it helps identify gaps and you will uncover specific ways in which workflow could benefit. These process improvements need to be communicated to guide people toward new patterns of thinking and operating. A recent industry report by AIIMS on digitizing the core business process, clearly states that around 75 percent of organizations consider process automation as a “very important” aspect. With good organizational change management (OCM) and process, a project is likely to meet its objectives of people management.
Digital transformation would create astounding market value and every vertical needs to adopt them or they are in danger of being left behind. Also, companies need to figure out how to measure the effectiveness and extract value; otherwise, a lot of investment would be wasted.
The key way to measure is to build metrics to measure progress and enables the company good returns on investments. Some organizations unable to measure the success, should use digital traction metrics which will provide insights. Measuring digital transformations and boosting them aids digital disruption.
AI, automation and mobility are variables enabling digitalization, and they tend to reduce the reliance upon human curators. Our ultimate goal of a digital organization should be to have a strategy where data are identified, curated, referenced and the end results benefit clients with measurable results.
It is indeed an ongoing agile process and we need to outline how this is or will impact every department while focusing on company-wide goals with a clear alignment to customer experience, both internal and external.
Sivarama Prasad Kolisetti is Sr. Vice President - Information Technology, Omega Healthcare Management Services
Disclaimer: This article is published as part of the IDG Contributor Network. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the contributing authors and not of IDG Media and its editor(s).