Digital transformation is more than technology adoption. The intent is to adopt technology as a means to improve the business. Business improvement is the ultimate outcome for digital transformation. When businesses place improvement front and center, they have more clarity on the type(s) of technology that meet their needs and hence, able to achieve dramatic return on their investments.
A successful digital transformation delivers business improvement in different areas.
- Customer experience
In the digital economy, customer expectations are elevated by the continuous rollout of user-friendly technologies. Customers want speed, convenience, and quality from businesses they purchase from.
Mobile orders, choice of parcel delivery location, cloud-based services are examples of businesses that have deployed technology to make customer’s lives easier. They establish competitive advantage while building a loyal customer base.
Those that fail to utilize technology will experience high customer churn and fall behind.
- Employee and team performance
Information exchange is the glue that connects work activities across an organization. When everyone uses the same tools, it eliminates the need to repeat a piece of information. It also minimizes information gaps.
Applications for time and task management increase employee productivity. Collaboration software makes it easy for teams to share feedback, making the process very efficient.
There are many technologies available to boost employee and team performance. A critical success factor is consistent adoption so a complete archive of information is captured. Everyone works with the same version of data.
- Process performance
Technology can automate repetitive tasks, eliminate manual workarounds, standardize and streamline workflows.
Enterprise resource planning software offers a complete suite of applications that support key business functions. The fully integrated functional modules enable a business perform end-to-end processes efficiently. Challenges with integration and duplicate data entry disappear.
In overhauling end-to-end processes in a holistic manner, the risk of optimizing tasks in one workgroup at the expense of another is minimized. The right technology also facilitates simplification and alignment of roles and responsibilities.
With abundant data captured in different applications, the embedded business insights are waiting to be exploited. Businesses that invest in data analytics have a better handle on business issues and how best to deploy their resources.
Business intelligent software has advanced significantly, providing quick access to data and capabilities to predict outcomes and optimize resource deployment. These applications replace Excel and offer a more reliable approach to dissect massive volume of data.
In addition, the technology implementation process would have the business complete a thorough review of data needs, ownership assignment, and their management. Informed decision-making improves decision quality.
- Business continuity
Natural disasters and cyberattacks expose businesses to risks of halting operations for a period of time.
Platforms such as Zoom has helped businesses transition to a remote work model during COVID-19. Workers are able to communicate, share files, and collaborate with teams while working remotely. Multifactor authentication applications add another layer of protection for network access.
Unexpected events could happen anytime. By planning ahead and implementing technologies to minimize the impact, businesses would be able to continue their operations in the interim.
To maximize the value of digital transformation, business leaders need to develop a vision for the future state where technologies are fully leveraged. With that vision, they create a clear roadmap to attain the business improvements they aim for. A coherent and comprehensive approach to identify business needs before diving into technology helps the business avoid investing in a point solution randomly.