In the most general terms, digital transformation means using technology to optimize your business strategies in today’s ever-evolving marketplace.
However, ask ten CEOs for their personal digital transformation definition, and they’ll give ten different answers. That’s because what digital transformation looks like in practice depends on the business, its goals, and—crucially—whether it’s being done successfully.
That’s not to say one organization won’t need to leverage their data in different ways than another, or that regulatory challenges and market pressures can’t drastically change digital scaling strategies. Without a doubt those discrepancies exist.
Regardless, there are some proven, effective ways to approach digital integration across all industries.
There are also some avoidable mistakes that will lead to less accurate data analysis and predictive capabilities, sluggish responses to market volatility, increased risk, and lost revenue.
Not only that, if you fail to keep pace with the technological demands of your industry, you risk alienating consumers, workers, and other important stakeholders.
In a very real sense, your reputation relies on meeting the technological expectations of those invested in your business.
By now you may be asking yourself:
- How can I lead a successful digital transformation of my company when my time and resources are already stretched thin?
- As someone who’s not already an IT expert, how can my business continue to compete digitally and make the right changes at the right time?
Consulting the right technology leaders about digital transformation strategies can greatly improve your chances of success and let you focus your attention where it needs to be.
At Vudu, our technology wizards believe that IT services are about more than simply fixing what’s broken; your company needs an IT vendor who can help you build long-term digital strategies by leveraging your data as efficiently as possible.
Here’s a closer look at how to define digital transformation for your business, and your IT partner’s role in harnessing digital success.
Technology is a tool like any other. A tool’s usefulness depends on how you wield it. Some businesses mistakenly see upgrading technology as the goal in and of itself.
According to an Everest Group report, 78 percent of enterprises fail in scaling their digital transformation initiatives, meaning most businesses never see the ROI they’d hoped for, despite initial successes. The report found that digital strategies which are misaligned with outmoded operating systems contributed the most to these failures.
Digital strategies must follow business objectives. “Going digital” is not an objective in itself.
CEOs and top leadership must therefore define clear business objectives and barriers to those objectives. Technological tools are just that — tools. Like any tool, you have to know how to use it, and you have to know which tools are best suited to fix which problems.
In your digital transformation efforts, what problems in your business do you expect your transformation to solve? If you assume that digital transformation will fix everything wrong with your business, you’re in for a long, expensive ride.
A digital transformation strategy can have numerous outcomes. It’s these outcomes, not the strategy itself, that transforms your business.
Here are a few examples:
- Faster decision-making intervals
- More efficient workflows
- A cheaper work product
- A better work product
- Flexibility to adapt to market changes
- Clearer performance metrics
- A better customer experience
At the heart of every successful business strategy is strong communication. Scaling new technology integration won’t work if different members of your team each have their own digital transformation definition.
When managers and workers don’t see eye to eye about how to implement new technology, what goals to target, or how to measure success, this implementation is doomed to fail from the get-go.
Getting the input of individual business leaders is crucial. We’ve all worked at a place where the people making the rules have no idea about what it’s like getting the job done on the ground level.
Get a feel for the challenges each unit in your business faces in their short- and long-term operation. What do they need to function better? They may have valuable input about the logistics of implementing new tools and systems.
This conversation is a two way street. Make sure business leaders understand why leadership is pursuing a digital transformation and what the transformation means for them and their team. Your digital transformation won’t land squarely without total alignment.
It’s not enough to simply have a strong business strategy while maintaining antiquated operational processes and siloed departments. Part of the digitization process requires you to bring your units into alignment with well-defined roles and performance goals to get the most out of your technology.
You should integrate new systems in ways that bolster existing cross-department communication and streamline workflows between departments.
Company leaders should never underestimate the role IT vendors play in their company’s success—or failure—in a digital world.
Businesses can no longer afford to pay for IT support services that simply go around fulfilling support tickets to fix things when they break, rather than addressing the root causes of those issues.
You need IT leaders willing to take on the responsibility of chief technology strategists. In today’s digital marketplace, companies really need their IT specialists to act as CTOs and CIOs, utilizing their expertise to inform your business strategy.
The right IT partner will be able to help you leverage data across all units in your company and provide actionable insights and metrics for success. Data bridges the divide between technology and its users, and a team of IT strategists who can gather, interpret, and use this data to bring you new knowledge can be an invaluable tool in your toolbox.
Vudu’s technology wizards move beyond the old break/fix approach to IT to help your company build long-term business strategies for digital integration. We use predictive data to help your workers get the most out of new systems, so as technological demands evolve your company can evolve with them.
At Vudu, we are technology wizards who want to bring IT magic to your business and achieve supernatural results. Make superior IT strategies and solutions part of your digital transformation definition. Tell us more about your goals.