Today, digital transformation is inevitable for most companies; it’s not just for those in the tech sector. This message is crystal clear in any panel discussion, study and article related to how organizations can stay competitive as the world shifts to digital.
By 2024, global spending on digital transformation is predicted to reach $2.51 trillion, while by 2026, this spending is forecast to reach an earth-shattering $3.4 trillion. While statistics suggest that 91% of companies are involved in some form of digital initiative, many business leaders I’ve talked to still feel woefully behind. So if you feel that your rivals are ahead of the game while you don’t know where to start, know that you are not alone.
Here’s how you can get over the first humps of transformation intent and get to implementation.
Getting Started: Identify Your Ambition
First, it is increasingly important to understand that digital transformation is not just a fancy word for moving to the cloud. It is more about integrating technology into all areas of your business and changing the entire organizational culture. Teams must be ready to experiment, challenge the status quo and cultivate tolerance for failures.
Digital transformation always begins with ambition. To identify yours, come up with a problem statement and the “why” behind your organizational change. This could reveal abundant room for improvement, such as enhancing customer experience, boosting team productivity or dealing with profits that fall short of your expectations.
You also might want to ask yourself the following questions:
• What is happening in the world that might affect my business?
• What are the major disruptors in my industry?
• What are customers complaining about?
• What products are emerging in response to market changes?
• What can we do differently to offer greater value to customers?
Once you understand your reason for digital transformation, you are ready for the next steps.
Search For New Opportunities At Intersections
Ideas for new products, services or organizational processes can often be found at intersections, such as across areas of expertise, your organization’s departments and industries, and through unexpected partnerships. By combining different domains in innovative ways, you can come up with opportunities that would have remained undiscovered had you focused on a single area only.
For example, I’ve seen a number of digitally mature life sciences companies combining the domains of pharmaceuticals, marketing and artificial intelligence to generate dynamic content that aligns with medical, legal and regulatory (MLR) standards at a large scale. More specifically, they’re relying on AI-driven content experience platforms to automatically tag their content, which makes it easier and faster for marketing teams to find, reuse, assess and update it. By using high-performing MLR-approved modules, they can quickly personalize their messaging, delivering greater value to their target audience, be it healthcare providers or patients.
Get Help From Third-Party Service Providers
If your digital transformation presupposes fundamental changes in IT infrastructure, software development or data management while your in-house team lacks sufficient expertise, collaborating with third-party service providers is a wise move. Reliable vendors can provide the experience and knowledge required for completing complex projects.
If you do not need custom functionality, building a software product may not be a worthwhile endeavor. Hiring a competent software development team is quite costly, and a single project may take months or even years. If custom software won’t necessarily improve your competitive advantage, you might consider turning to third-party vendors for ready-made solutions. For instance, many life sciences companies make use of pre-built customer relationship management systems to store and analyze their interaction history with healthcare providers. This allows these companies to easily monitor the performance of their marketing campaigns without allocating excessive resources to development efforts.
Start With A Proof Of Concept And Minimum Viable Product
Before making heavy investments in product development, you might want to begin with a proof of concept (POC) to make sure that a product or feature idea is technically feasible. The POC can help you identify potential problems and build support for the product.
You may also want to create a minimum viable product (MVP). Unlike a POC, which tests technical feasibility, an MVP tests market viability and user satisfaction. An MVP refers to a fully working solution with a limited set of features that is enough to enter the market and win investors’ support. Creating an MVP will allow you to gather user feedback and make incremental improvements later if necessary.
Prioritize Risk Management
Digital transformation is always a challenging undertaking involving numerous risks related to technology, business processes, employees or compliance. Therefore, it is pivotal to identify them, assess their likelihood and impact on your organization, and establish risk-acceptance thresholds.
McKinsey found that leading companies are increasingly relying on automated risk assessment solutions for every new product feature. This can help you assess the risks related to new functionality from the beginning of the development process. Then, you can work closely with subject matter experts to develop solid mitigation strategies for each identified risk.
Get Teams In The Same Boat
Digital transformation is not a solo effort; it requires the active engagement of teams and stakeholders. Boston Consulting Group found that companies that focus on culture as part of their digital transformation are five times more likely to report “breakthrough or strong financial performance” than those that ignore culture. Therefore, it is essential to involve teams in the planning, execution and evaluation of transformation to ensure that change occurs not only in business processes but also in people’s mindsets.
Starting any long-term project may seem overwhelming. Digital transformation may take months and even years, presenting both opportunities and threats. But once you clearly understand the “why” and the “how” behind your organizational change, the project will likely seem more feasible. And when hurdles unexpectedly arise, you will be better able to stay on track.
In the context of the Industrial Revolution, applying technology to operating mechanisms in each organization is extremely necessary, and is also an inevitable trend to minimize workload while still ensuring efficiency and enhance its competitive position in the market. Furthermore, applying management software into a business will also help build an organization with a clear system, promoting consistency, transparency and accuracy. Tasken eOffice, researched and built by Opus Solution – a business consultant in Vietnam – is an internal work management system as well as the management of automated, online, user-friendly approval processes, allowing businesses to operate more effectively on the path of digital transformation