As technology has proliferated and advanced, it has opened up far more opportunities for businesses to improve their processes and operations, leading to better services and customer experiences. But digital transformation isn’t a one-and-done project or an initiative confined to the IT department. To truly keep your company competitive and adaptable, it is necessary to adopt a holistic approach to digital transformation.
Our IT Operations Manager, Wayne Speziale, specializes in planning, developing, and executing process improvement strategies to maximize overall business efficiency and profitability, making him an excellent resource for considering the wide-ranging implications of digital transformation. Read Wayne’s insights about how organizations should conceptualize holistic digital transformation, its benefits, and its implementation strategies.
What Is Digital Transformation, Really?
Digital transformation is a radical rethinking of how businesses use technology. It requires that organizations collaborate across departments to effectively pair business principles with agile implementation.
“A common misconception is that digital transformation only concerns IT,” said Wayne. “In reality, digital transformation is a holistic approach to improving the entire customer experience. It touches every part of the business and does not just focus on the technologies that are only a part of the equation.”
For digital transformation to be effective, it needs to align with and support your business’ strategic goals. Another misconception is that digital transformation means taking your business in a completely different direction that goes against its objectives. While digital transformation does involve change, these changes should be executed in service of a company’s long-term goals.
When considering digital transformation initiatives, it’s important to ask, “What business outcomes do you want to achieve for customers?” Digital transformation is a critical strategy for meeting and exceeding customer expectations as they change over time. The resulting changes to your organization’s technologies, processes, and operations are often far-reaching, requiring people throughout your company to adapt and rethink the way they work.
Advantages of Holistically Adopting Digital Transformation
By taking on a holistic approach to digital transformation, businesses can reap a number of tangible benefits. Wayne explains, “Digital transformation should lead to overall revenue growth and it should have a net positive impact on the efficiency and productivity of all operations.”
A few advantages of digital transformation include:
- Gaining customer insights and creating an effective digital transformation cycle
- Increasing overall profits, despite initial costs
- Streamlining productivity and boosting employee satisfaction
Gaining Customer Insights
With more advanced technology comes more opportunities for data collection and analysis. A major component of staying ahead of the competition and better serving your customers is gaining more insight on their behaviors, experiences, and needs.
Often, as you learn more about what your customers need, as well as what is and is not working with your products and services, you identify areas to improve or innovate that can be supported by technology. Implementing this technology continues the ongoing process of digital transformation, creating an effective cycle for gaining insights, applying solutions, and enhancing your offerings and customer experiences.
Increasing Overall Profits
Business owners and leaders may worry about the costs of digital transformation. Adopting new technology and replacing old technology requires an upfront financial commitment. Not to mention, digital transformation takes time to strategize and implement, bringing with it the potential for network downtime and disruption to business operations.
Fortunately, businesses can avoid many of these issues with proper research, planning, and development prior to implementation. And what many companies fail to realize is the cost of not adopting digital transformation, which is often far greater.
Outdated technology puts your company behind the curve, limits productivity, and can result in suffering customer experiences. Meanwhile, research conducted by SAP Center for Business Insights and Oxford Economics found that 80% of business leaders whose companies have undertaken digital transformation report that it has increased their profits.
One of the greatest benefits to digital transformation is that it streamlines productivity. According to a study from Zensar that surveyed over 1,000 white-collar and higher-level professionals about digital transformation:
- 76% of workers reported higher productivity.
- 53% of workers reported they are more successful.
- 28% of workers reported they are happier.
Digital transformation allows every aspect of your organization to run in sync and creates cross-department collaboration toward strategic objectives. When workers have the digital tools and processes they need to operate more efficiently, they can spend less time on menial tasks, better manage their work, and meet more of their goals. It’s not surprising that this leads to more productive, successful, and happy employees.
Implementing Holistic Digital Transformation
Digital transformation often demands widespread change, but it doesn’t have to mean complete disruption to your business. It calls for careful research, planning, and development before implementation. Yet digital transformation is also about adaptability, which is why it’s important to be prepared to pivot as needed.
A few considerations to keep in mind when you are adopting digital transformation include:
- Assessing your current infrastructure
- Collaborating across departments
- Creating goals and a vision
Assessing Your Current Infrastructure
By assessing the current infrastructure of your business, you can take stock of everything that’s going right and where there’s room for improvement or innovation. Evaluate the processes and technologies of your workforce, as well as the experiences of your customers. These assessments will lay the foundation for your digital transformation initiatives.
Collaborating Across Departments
Collaborating across departments is essential in this process. Not only can you gain valuable insights by consulting with every department, but also you can anticipate their unique needs and potential issues, maintaining a positive company culture. In particular, organizations should be sure to plan accordingly for any employee training that will be required with new technologies.
Creating Goals and a Vision
It’s important to create specific goals and a vision for your organization’s digital transformation. Clarify what you hope to accomplish and make sure it aligns with the overall goals and vision of your company.
Choose Guardian Computer to Help with the IT Side of Digital Transformation
While there’s more to digital transformation than IT, it’s certainly a critical part of the process. At Guardian Computer, we provide custom solutions to IT digital transformation, allowing you to focus on your day-to-day business, new opportunities, and long-term goals.
Contact us today to learn how we can help!