“No force on earth can stop an idea whose time has come.” ― Victor Hugo
The era of digital invasion is here! And we mean it in the most positive sense. Mobiles, laptops, and other forms of screens are increasingly influencing our decisions. Every sector and every business in the sector should now choose to adapt or go extinct soon, a formula that has been cemented because of the pandemic. Hence, every organization, even with no ambition but to survive, is undergoing its sort of digital transformation. Let us understand the 7 tips for crafting a digital transformation roadmap.
1. What is digital transformation?
According to my McKinsey, digital transformation can bring about 20% to 50% economic gains and a 20% to 30% increase in client satisfaction. Such is the power of digital transformation! But that is it?
At the cost of oversimplifying, we can understand digital transformation as the process of integrating digital tools and technologies into all facets of a business. These tools are aided and guided by emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, the Internet of Things, Automation, Accounting Tools, Data Science, and so on.
2. Why is digital transformation important?
The importance of digital transformation changes from business to business and also with age.
Survival is the most obvious answer. Especially for established and legacy businesses that have witnessed the wrath of the pandemic. But for new-age businesses, the reasons would be to enhance customer experiences (CX) and establish a niche reputation for their brands.
While businesses that fall in between are adopting digital transformation to achieve lower operational expenditure, increase efficiency, and improve their market positioning.
All in all, having a digital presence also helps your business in attracting new customers and increasing your reach.
The COVID-19 pandemic has clearly shown us that businesses that are not willing to embrace the new tools are at risk of either being too slow for competition or will become static and will fade away with time. Moreover, digital transformation also shows the top management’s willingness to embrace the future. It gives:
- Option to work seamlessly from everywhere to the employees.
- Assurance of safety and security to your customers.
- Convenience to customers to reach you through various touchpoints.
- Ability to your employees to serve your customers through various channels.
3. What is a Digital Transformation Strategy?
To put it simply, Digital Transformation Strategy chalks out a detailed roadmap of the methods that a business is planning to adopt to transform the business digitally. The strategy will help businesses achieve this transformation seamlessly and help them tackle challenges that you might face in the digital transformation journey.
4. Getting started
The biggest advantage of these technologies is that they can be customized and used to support specific businesses and sectors. They can solve, manage and strengthen the challenges and processes that your business is facing specifically. Hence, these solutions are tailor-made for you. So remember to find a team (both internal and your vendor) who can very clearly identify and define the challenge you are trying to solve.
That said, digital transformation is a specialized job, and not just in terms of your digital transformation partner, it calls for a fundamental shift in culture and mindset right from Top board-level executives to entry-level personnel.
5. 7 Tips for Building a Digital Transformation Roadmap
If you are beginning your digital transformation journey or considering one, please keep in mind that it is more than just a technology change. Here are a few tips you will find useful while crafting your roadmap for digital transformation. Remember the stronger, detailed, and comprehensive your roadmap is, the faster and resilient your journey will become.
5.1. Involve your employees – Listen to their opinion
Identify as many key stakeholders from your organization, if possible across all levels to pitch in ideas while planning. Explain to them how important the journey is and why they should be part of it, list out the benefits of this change, and make them feel they are a part of it.
Make sure there are multiple channels for you to take and understand inputs from all stakeholders – management, employees, partner, and if required customers. It gives a 360-degree view of the challenge and valuable insights on how this digitization can help yahoo overcome the challenge.
Every department that is a user of the technology or tool should collectively give you a sign-off.
Once the idea is sold you can witness how streamlined and organized the processes will become and how the employees will embrace this change.
5.2. Align transformation with business goals
Understand that once the inputs arrive targets can be set for each department. Mention clearly what you wish to achieve during and after the digital transformation, that way you know how successful the process was. But make sure these targets are measurable and agreed upon. All these goals should in turn match up and align with the organizational goals, both business, and operational.
Because digital transformation cuts across every line and all the teams, they need to be fully on board with the roadmap. As an organization, one cannot achieve digital transformation only out of the IT department. A roadmap is only complete if it is fully in sync with the organization’s overall vision, mission, goals, and future.
Digital transformation should be implemented in agile methodology. Make a list of the most vital and enthusiastic teams that can adapt the technology to get some quick wins. It not only boosts the employee morale but also throws open a few challenges you might encounter before you move to more critical functions.
5.4. Set priorities
Digital transformation needs to trickle in from high priority to low. Place a stakeholder and team to evaluate why a particular suggestion is requested and determine the criticality of the request and place it on the list. You have to determine the criticality to the functionality based on the potential impact. Once you’ve achieved a few quick wins then you directly can take the larger challenges head-on.
5.5. Set S.M.A.R.T goals
Make sure the goals and Key performance indicators are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-based (S.M.A.R.T), because no matter what the goals are, it is important to set a metric to measure them.
Since digital transformation can be a touching topic, you must identify both the best-case scenario, the worst-case scenario, and your expected outcome in written form.
Your KPIs should center around specific outcomes. Goals should be more than simply stating you want to improve operational efficiency. It is better to set a clear number across every goal. For example, to improve operational efficiency by 15% within the next 3 months.
5.6. Establish accountability
When KPIs are determined, agreed, and put numbers across the goals, make sure you make a team of key stakeholders who are responsible for these goals. These stakeholders must have both visions of digital transformation, and the competency to lead a diverse team. You can start with the pilot projects to check the temperament of the leaders and then you can identify accountable managers who can take on such responsibilities.
That said, make sure these managers are well looked-after and listen to regularly. It is important to make sure they get the resources to make sure the pilots are successfully executed. This not only brings digital transformation but also identifies future leaders who can shoulder the digital future of your organization.
5.7. Think big
Finally, when you are bringing a transformation, don’t be satisfied with minimal changes. Make sure you completely transform business processes and replace failing systems. This is important because in the long run, it takes more effort, and money to patch legacy systems to digital systems and patch flaws than to transform the service line or business function.
6. Follow the plan and hire an experienced partner
Building a roadmap requires a comprehensive outlook and stakeholder mentality to map all the team requirements and priorities. There might be a mixed response, few teams might be willing to stick to old methods, and a few teams will want to be part of pilots. But make sure you stick to the plan and so does your digital transformation partner. Make sure there is transparency across the journey. Kyanon Digital, a Vietnam-based tech powerhouse, has vast experience in building world-class digital solutions using agile processes. We have a dedicated architecture team that can help you in crafting an excellent digital transformation roadmap. Our team brings invaluable experience in transforming many small, medium, and large businesses alike with continuous support.
Look no further, follow these simple rules, and you’ll find assured success with us.