Everything You Need to Know About Digital Transformation
Digital Transformation is the adoption of digital technology to transform services or business units by replacing non-digital or manual processes with digital processes. It is also the replacement of older digital technology with newer digital technology for efficiency and to enhance the customer experience.
How can Digital Transformation benefit your enterprise?
Is there a framework that can help you get started?
It’s already 2021, and in just a span of 12 months we have experienced a wave of change like never before at a global scale. No one could have predicted the turn of events last year. The rate of change was exponential.
You may have heard a lot about the impact of technology on different sectors and how business leaders are turning to technology to stay ahead. One of the significant reasons to depend on cutting-edge technology over the years has been to improve and enhance the customer experience.
Most enterprises today want complete or partial automation in their business to give them a competitive edge.
Be it a startup, small business, or social enterprise -- technology has become essential.
A recent IDC study found that 90% of business processes will have shifted to AI or other
technology forms by the end of 2025 . This gradual shift in trend is called Digital Transformation.
If there is one thing we have all learnt in the past 12 months, it is that technology is more of a necessity than a choice.
As a consumer, chances are that you are now buying online and not relying only on brick and mortar shops that are confined to a single geographical location.
As an enterprise, even if you have a website or a mobile app, you are probably not making enough moves to get the traffic and engagement to your various digital channels.
This is where a solid Digital Transformation strategy becomes a game-changer for your enterprise.
What Is Digital Transformation?
According to Wikipedia, Digital Transformation is the process of adopting digital technology to transform services or businesses by replacing non-digital or manual processes with digital processes or replacing legacy digital technology with modern digital technology.
In layman terms, Digital Transformation means using technology in business to capture value for stakeholders by creating differences in business operations.
From IT automation to the implementation of new digital business models, Digital Transformation is a very broad concept.
Transformation could be in response to the changing market demands or an attempt to get ahead of the curve before the market demand hits.
The process of Digital Transformation changes according to the scale of business operations and anticipated future demands.
Different experts define Digital Transformation in various ways:
"At its heart, digital transformation is about connecting better with digital customers” - Peggy Chen, CMO of SDL
"Digital Transformation is an opportunity to leverage new technologies to change the way your business organizes." - Mark Foster, Senior VP of IBM
However, Digital Transformation looks different for different sectors.
How Can Digital Transformation Benefit Your Sector?
Digital Transformation is significant for all sectors. It begins and ends with how much you want your customers to get involved in your industry.
Businesses today have switched from excel sheet to different software solutions to keep track of their data. From manual scheduling to the use of technology such as scheduling software, sectors like healthcare and supply chains have come a long way.
A recent survey shows that 70% of different sectors have adopted a Digital Transformation strategy and one of the foremost reason is survival. Those that did not adapt fast enough did not make it out of the COVID19 pandemic.
Apart from longing survival, Digital Transformation also contributes to enterprise speed and agility, improves operational efficiency, brings scalability, and, most importantly, enhances the customer experience.
Also, though ROI can be impacted by different factors, Digital Transformation contributes significantly to it.
The following are some significant features of Digital Transformation:
Reduced Investment Cost
Digital Transformation in the retail industry, for example, has been impacted drastically by digital tools. Without scalable digital devices, enterprises’ time and money on training new employees, and using the resources could get out of hand.
Hence, these tools can be used to cut costs and increase productivity. Moreover, the companies using the technologies have seen a surge of 39% in growth and reduced customer time by 21%.
Collaboration Across Different Departments
The foundation of Digital Transformation is based on digital congruence. It means combining different departments using a single line of technology to boost productivity and improve redundancy.
From leadership to entry-level employees, the sudden switch to digital transformation can be a daunting process and thus, it needs strong communication. When all departments unite together using a single workforce, strong company culture will form and cut costs and increase ROI.
Better Customer Experience
At the heart of Digital Transformation is the customer experience. Digital Transformation can shape the way customers behave by improving the customer’s journey and bringing more loyalty to them.
Customers want a smooth experience through multiple touchpoints, including mobile apps, social media, email and live chat. Digital tools and methods can be a game-changer for these businesses.
However, there is still a long way to go to spread Digital Transformation to various business sectors.
Digital Transformation Framework
A digital transformation framework is a blueprint that organizations create to get success in the digital journey. However, the blueprint is different for different organizations.
A digital transformation strategy is what defines this framework. There are always a few constants that you would notice across various frameworks.
The below-given image is a perfect example of a Digital Transformation framework and the essential factors needed in channelizing the digital strategy for your business:
The inclusion of four end-users and different processes involved in managing the entire business form the framework for any enterprise.
Hence, a constructive digital strategy coupled with a good framework can streamline the process and give your digital transformation the right path and best chance of succeeding.
As your business progresses and move forward as defined by your digital transformation strategy, you will still be on the lookout for better approaches, modern technologies and better tools.
Your transformation journey will affect every business process, from automation to controlling costs, managing the workforce and scaling various aspects of your production and supply chain.
Lastly, approaching the digital transformation in your business as a technological journey, independent of the broader purpose and long term vision of your organization, is useless.
Hence, you must ensure that your digital transformation strategy is always in alignment with the mission and vision of your organization.
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